Obituary Listings

Jefferson Evans

June 2, 1923 January 4, 2018
Jefferson Evans
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Obituary for Jefferson Evans

Jefferson Evans (Jeff) was born June 2, 1923 in Crawfordville, a town in Taliaferro County, Georgia to the late John Evans and Pearl Chapman Evans. Jeff departed this life at Yale New Haven Hospital on January 4, 2018. Jeff was one of 14 living children. He was educated in Georgia in a school built by his father and the men of the town. His family owned over 250 acres of land thus requiring all the children to rise early to do farm chores before going to school.

In 1945 Jefferson met and married the late Otelia Kirby Evans. Jeff and Otelia had three children, Bunardy Evans Poitier, Dale Evans and Calvin Evans (both deceased). He was a hard worker and loving father, who wanted to give everything he could to his family. In the early years of their marriage, Jeff had several positions as a trucker, painter, television repairman and studied cosmetology. During those years he rightfully earned the title of “Jeff, jack of all trades”.

In 1944, Jeff applied and was accepted in the New Haven School of Culinary. He then became the first African American to graduate from the New Haven School of Culinary in the class of 1947. For several years, Jeff spent many long hours working to improve his talents and cooking skills. While perfecting many different cuisines, he was elevated from cook to head chef status and became an excellent one at that. He soon earned the nickname “Jeff the Chef’’ when he perfected the skill of deboning a chicken or turkey. In addition, he perfected the skill in creating delicious meals from left overs. Chef Jeff wanted to share his talents, so he decided to take a teaching position at Johnston & Wales and later Hype Park Culinary Institute of America. He loved teaching but he had dreams and a desire to open his own restaurant.

In 1982, after being an essential part of many successful restaurants; Jeff decided to open and operate his own restaurant which he named “The One-N-Only”. His dream had finally materialized having a sole food restaurant featuring a full menu ranging from chitterlings to veal cordon bleu. “The One-N-Only” was now Jeff’s successful business having celebrities stopping bye for a good home cooked meal.

Jeff leaves to cherish his memory: his daughter Bunardy Evans (Brack) Poitier, Jeanere R. Poitier, Brackston Poitier, Baron (Kristian) Poitier, Julian and Josalyn Rainey of Arizona, Jasmin Rainbow, Isabela and Samuel Poitier of Grande Prairie, Texas, Reginal and Maria Morton, Jasmine and Jenaya Morton of Hamden, Ct. Two Brothers: Alvin (Marcella) Evans of Los Angeles, Ca.; Lewis (Beth) Evans of Union Point, Ga.: Two Sisters, Barbara Landrum of Atlanta, Ga. And Melba Hughes of Atlanta, Ga, a host of nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends to whom his life will always be a beacon of light.

Memorial services d being held Jan. 26, 2018 from 5pm to 7pm at Beulah Heights First Pentecostal Church, 782 Orchard Street New Haven, Ct
In lieu of cards and flowers please make a donation in Chef Jefferson Evans’ name to the Black Culinary Alliance (

To send flowers or a remembrance gift to the family of Jefferson Evans, please visit our Tribute Store.

Previous Events





5:00 PM 1/26/2018 5:00:00 PM
Beulah Heights First Pentecostal Church

782 Orchard St.
New Haven, CT 06511

Memorial Service

Beulah Heights First Pentecostal Church
782 Orchard St. New Haven 06511 CT
United States

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