Tributes and condolences are being posted to an official memorial Facebook page — “Remembering Jon Nizzi” — set up for Jon Letke, Mr Leather Ottawa 2014, who died suddenly the evening of July 24. Letke, 25, known in the leather community as Nizzi Greatpup, committed suicide.
His family has released the following statement:
“On Thursday, July 24, 2014 Jon Nizzi made the final decision to take his life. We, his family, care for him greatly and we wish him well as he transcends the physical realm. He leaves behind his faithful companion, Cerberus aka Cerby, as well as his loving partner, Steve Loki.
“He has rippled through our community in a positive light, touching countless lives and hearts throughout the world. Both in his work as Mr Leather Ottawa, but also as a good soul that worked to protect and bring people together.
“Those who he touched the deepest will forever remember his smile and his radiating energy, an energy that could soothe any soul and calm any heart. His generosity in reaching out and be by the sides of those who needed a helping hand and paw, he was always there to provide them with endless strength.
“He came into the community to mend fences and do the hard work, and although his work is not complete, he provided us all a great base to develop together. It is with extremely heavy hearts, that we say goodbye to his physical form, yet we will all welcome with open arms his spirit that will continue to help us all grow.
“A public memorial to celebrate his life, his loves, and his work will be held this Thursday, July 31, 2014 at 8pm in the field behind the Saint Paul University on Main Street. All animals are welcome to attend as Nizzi’s background was in training dogs. We ask that no alcohol, drugs, or tobacco products be brought to the event, as this is a time of respect. Please bring your own chair or blanket and we ask that nothing be left behind.
“Nizzi was a man of few resources, if you wish to assist in the costs associated has set up a gofundme account in his honor at gofundme.com/NizziMemorial. All monies raised over the costs will be donated to Royal Ottawa Hospital and Friendly Giants Animal Rescue.”
As of the morning of July 28, 34 people had donated approximately $3,100 of the $4,000 goal.