Meet Jeff

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Jeff Katon is the beloved son of Louis and Joyce Katon. He was born and raised in Taunton, Massachusetts with his older brother, Chris; twin brother, Mark and a younger sister, Melissa.

Childhood memories include baseball trophy’s and swimming pools, family vacations, backyard football games and music concerts. I remember Sunday dinners at Nana and Papa’s house and of adventures in the basement; of summer vacations to Cape Cod and playing in the sand; and of Christmas morning ninja missions with flashlights down the stairs.
A night at a bar after working a mid-summer double on Cape Cod was the first time I heard him sing. I nearly fell off my chair when he grabbed a microphone and crooned Frank Sinatra’s “Summer Wind.” The piano player played and the table all clapped because Jeff was on stage and the party had just begun.
 Jeff and I each played rugby during school and sometimes he’d spend the weekend at my apartment for some of Adam’s home brew and games of darts and pool. One night we arrived to his house for a Christmas party and found an inflatable swimming pool in his third floor living room.
There are Spring Break stories of Jeff doing the worm in a bar in Mexico and of nearly running headlong into the jaws of an alligator while chasing Clay’s pop fly off the tee.
Jeff was graduated from Taunton High School and earned a degree in Business and Spanish at Framingham State College. He chose to pursue a career in restaurant management and moved to West Palm Beach, Florida with the goal of playing some golf and having fun.
He soon began working his way up through Charley’s Crab restaurants and after having great business success, Jeff was asked to open new locations in both New Jersey and Ohio before further advancement brought him to Hilton Head.
Jeff fell in love with the South Carolina Lowcountry and it became his adopted home.
From 2001 – 2006 if Jeff wasn’t in the dining room of the restaurant, he could most likely be found on one of the area’s many golf courses, or relaxing with a glass of Cakebread Chardonnay at Santa Fe Cafe, Sage Room, Michael Anthony’s, Metro or Red Fish.
Stories of his Jeff’s love for his family and friends are too plentiful to count. I recall surprise visits home to play golf with Dad on his birthday; our Father’s Day Weekend trip to San Francisco for the Red Sox – Giants series; his visit to St. Louis with Missy to see Mark and bring Alexis to her first baseball game; and a trip to Hawaii with Aaron to visit his sick grandmother, just to name a few.
Jeff was a terrific athlete and for several years played semi-pro baseball in Charleston, SC. He was an avid Red Sox fan, following the team during their unbelievable 2004 World Championship season to San Francisco, Boston and Baltimore, then ALCS games in New York before ending the season in St. Louis and running onto the field after Game 4 of the World Series.
He was an exceptional golfer and loved nothing better than to vacation to Pebble Beach or Kapalua, where he could test his skills on some of the world’s best golf courses. With a little prompting our cousin Mike will tell you about the night Jeff talked him into a Statue of Liberty shot, then of the next day when Jeff taught us both how to hit a high fade.
I miss most his sense of humor and never knowing when I’d receive his next telephone call. Some of my favorites are him calling during dinner at Mama’s Fish House; of the day he bought his Porsche; and during halftime of the Super Bowl, when after a few minutes of talking about my kids he casually mentioned he’d gotten tickets and was calling from the game.
Jeff was that once-in-a-lifetime person that could do just about anything he set his mind to, so when he told me on Dad’s birthday that he wanted to open a fine dining restaurant on Hilton Head Island I told him I was all in.
Over the next year and a half his dream transpired into Aqua Grille and Lounge, a beautiful oceanfront restaurant featuring indoor waterfalls, tropical aquariums and fresh seafood.
The restaurant opened in April of 2006 and almost immediately became the new place to go on the Island for excellent food, great service and a relaxing atmosphere. Tragically, only four months after seeing his dream come true, Jeff was killed in an automobile accident. He was 32.

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