Jeff was born on December 17, 1957 in Des Moines. He was the son of John and Gretchen (Freel) Brebner. His father left the family when Jeff was a toddler. His mother, Gretchen, raised him until her death when Jeff was 13 years old. He and his brothers went to live with their Aunt Rose in Renton, Wash. Jeff graduated from Renton High School in 1976. On July 9, 1982, he was united in marriage to Marcia Brighton at Waterworks Park in Des Moines. To this union was born Valerea and Zachary.
Jeff was an avid reader and had two short stories published. He loved the guitar and had an encyclopedic knowledge of music trivia. He was a devoted husband and father. He spent the last 15 years of his work life as a machinist, most recently at Bobalee Hydraulics.
Jeff battled health issues his whole life. When organ transplantation was just in its infancy, he received a kidney transplant on August 18, 1982. That kidney endured for 20 ½ years. He was then on dialysis for 1 ½ years during which time he fought Hepatitis C, a result of the kidney transplant in 1982. He received a kidney from his wife on August 3, 2004. In 2010, Jeff was diagnosed with esophageal cancer from which there was no escape. Through it all, Jeff always stayed positive and easy-going.
He is survived by his wife of 30 years, Marcia Brighton-Brebner of Newell; his daughter, Valerea Brebner of Fort Dodge; his son, Zachary Brebner of Fort Dodge; two brothers, John (Nancy) Brebner, Jr. of Kent, Washington and Jerry Brebner of Buckley, Washington; aunt and second mother, Rose Putz of Sun City West, Arizona; aunts Darlene Wolfe of Des Moines, Nancy (Lyle) Mendenhall of Parrish, Florida, Frances (Jack) Minnick of Sun City West, Arizona and mother-in-law, Norma Brighton of Newell.
Preceding Jeff in death were his mother, Gretchen; uncles Richard Freel, Robert Freel and Norman Freel; his grandparents, Eldora (Johnson) and Dominic Disco; Valerea and Zachary's grandfathers, Gordon Putz and Rev. George Brighton.