Born in Lawrence, Massachusetts on March 22nd, 1950

Departed on September 6th, 2020 and resided in Lakewood, Colorado

    John, AKA Johnny, Broco, OT, TD, Silver Fox, Buddy Boy, and Fred, left us quietly on September 6th after a courageous battle with colon cancer. He was born in the wonderful city of Lawrence, Massachusetts, the 3rd of four sons of Peter and Olive Naffah. Johnny visited his brother Gary in Denver, Colorado in 1974, and never left. He joined Gary at the notorious Duffy’s Shamrock, where he worked as a bartender for over 20 years. Johnny studied art at the University of Colorado, where he received his Fine Arts degree. Many of his creations are displayed in the homes of family and friends. When Duffy’s closed in 2006, Johnny took his talents and his many loyal customers to Marlowe’s on the 16th Street mall. It is an understatement to say that Johnny was loved by everyone he met. He stood at 5’5” and weighed in at a lean 135 pounds, but his heart was huge. He made up for his size with a booming voice, great sense of humor, and his unique charisma. Friends describe him as one of the most honest, loyal, fun loving and kind guy one could ever meet. He applied his talents to a bartending career that was more than a job to him, it was his passion. Johnny is a legend in the Denver hospitality industry. He could not go anywhere without running into someone he knew.

    Johnny met the love of his life, Anne Helene Cagney at, of course, Duffy’s, and they spent the last 15 years happily together. They loved to travel, especially to beaches, world renowned cities, and of course, family back in Massachusetts. Johnny was a huge Boston sports fan and he made sure that everyone in Denver knew it.

    Johnny is survived by his brother Stephen (Karen) of Londonderry, New Hampshire, brother Douglas (Maureen) of Methuen, Massachusetts, and many nieces and nephews.  He was preceded in death by his brother Gary (Kathi Jensen).

    John’s warm spirit and bright light will remain with all of his family and friends…

    Donations in lieu of flowers to the following:

    Colorectal Cancer Alliance

    www.impact.ccalliance.org

    The Denver Hospice

    www.thedenverhospice.org

    Guestbook Entries

    Webster Owen

    Rip Johnny 

    September 9th, 2020 at 11:41am
    Webster Owen

    Rip Johnny you’re a great guy 

    September 9th, 2020 at 11:42am
    Shane Santi

    RIP Johnny! You are one of the greats! Save me a seat at the bar upstairs…

    September 9th, 2020 at 12:16pm
    Anne⁹

    This is a beautiful commentary on John. He looks so handsome in his picture. His spirit will live on in all of Denver.

    September 9th, 2020 at 1:54pm
    Eileen Cox

    You all nailed it with his “unique charisma.” I was always so happy to see Uncle John at family gatherings. So genuinely friendly. He will be sorely missed. Love to Anne Helene and family.

    September 9th, 2020 at 2:07pm
    Leroy Brewster Jr.

    I feel very fortunate and honored to be able to say Johnny was my friend. I’ll miss that great big smile, but I’ll never forget it.  Rest In Peace my friend.

    September 9th, 2020 at 2:13pm
    Eric Zimp

    RIP my friend…going to miss the NY-Boston love of sports that we shared…you rock!!!!  Cheers!!!!

    September 9th, 2020 at 6:11pm
    Michelle and Dave McCrad6

    Johnny you will be missed 😢 Anne what beautiful words, written beautifully.

    September 9th, 2020 at 9:01pm
    Dave Price

    Rest in peace, Johnny. You are sorely missed.

    September 9th, 2020 at 11:37pm
    Gabriel

    I’m proud to be able to have been one of Johnny’s many, many friends for the last two decades. I’m gonna miss his smart ass comments and his contagious laugh. RIP, bday bro🙌  

    September 10th, 2020 at 12:11am
    Anne Helene Cagney

    I am sorry for your loss. Sending you love and sympathy for this time. He will be missed.

    September 10th, 2020 at 7:38am
    Rich Stilley

    RIP Johnny you were a good friend and somebody who everybody will remember. Save me seat at that big bar in the sky.

    September 10th, 2020 at 8:42am
    Mike Plancarte

    Johnny, your bright soul and genuine warmth and kindness will be missed but your memories will live on. You lifted so many spirits on a daily basis that I know we’re all thankful for. Definitely honored to have known you. May you rest easy my friend!  

    September 10th, 2020 at 9:16am
    Jeremy Johnson

    Farewell, Johnny. You were not only a great person but a great connector of other great people. I have so many friends I met and got to know sitting at your bar. You will be missed.

    September 10th, 2020 at 9:33am
    Glenn Harrison

    Farewell my friend. I can’t say enough about what a great person you were. We will meet again to complain about the Sox, Pats, Celts and Bruins. We will always have the best seats in the house. 

    September 10th, 2020 at 10:18am
    Nina Andres

    I love you so much Johnny! I’d do anything for one of your lovingly displeasing looks❤️

    September 10th, 2020 at 10:18am
    Tom Barnwell

    Oh Johnny how you will be missed by many. You were quite the gentleman most of the time. That always ended at last call hah till the next day. Your ability to give suggestions to people either made them cry or laugh. You were a classic my friend. RIP 

    September 10th, 2020 at 10:46am
    Opie Clark

    Thanks for the stories, drinks and the love Johnny. You’ll be missed. Love you buddy.

    September 10th, 2020 at 10:59am
    Jamal Woods

    Always great times my friend. Knowing you was a special experience. GO SOX

    September 10th, 2020 at 11:01am
    Matthew Lake

    RIP Johnny!

    September 10th, 2020 at 11:08am
    Zac Johnson

    A master of his craft and an exceptional person, we will miss you Johnny! Love and condolences to your fam and all of your friends❤️

    September 10th, 2020 at 11:27am
    Beverly Cox

    Even through our collective grief, John lives on in the hearts and minds of all who knew and loved him.

    September 10th, 2020 at 11:34am
    Tara Hixson

    You are and will always be one of a kind Johnny! You will be missed. 

    September 10th, 2020 at 1:01pm
    Bonnie Schuldt

    I am among the lucky ones to have an original John Naffah artwork on my wall. I will treasure it and his memory forever. A dear, dear friend and a true gentleman. Love and condolences to Anne Helene, the Naffah family, and all John’s extended “family of friends.”

    September 10th, 2020 at 2:41pm
    Chris Haney

    One of my best buddies of all time. I’ll miss you very much.  RIP Banana. 

    September 10th, 2020 at 2:48pm
    Damo McHugh

    RIP Johnny,it was always a pleasure!

    September 10th, 2020 at 4:50pm
    Bill Schlink

    I too have an original Naffah Masterpice which reposes quietly on my bedroom wall.  I have always cherished my ties to Duffy’s, John, Gary, and Ken and Frank. Many fond memories with you Johnny!!

    September 10th, 2020 at 5:25pm
    Dan Moriarty

    I spent a good part of my twenties sitting on a barstool across from Johnny and gang, and while I left Denver long ago, this rang true: “It is an understatement to say that Johnny was loved by everyone he met. He stood at 5’5” and weighed in at a lean 135 pounds, but his heart was huge. He made up for his size with a booming voice, great sense of humor, and his unique charisma.” Rest in peace, Johnny. I’m still down here watching the cartoons (only he would get this) and I have nothing but fond memories of you. My condolences to your wife and and your family. Tell your brother Gary hi!

    September 10th, 2020 at 6:32pm
    Shannon Engler

    You will be forever missed and loved Johnny. Thank you for the company and always knowing better than I did.

    September 10th, 2020 at 7:42pm
    Eric Rivera

    Johnnie you are truly a man of inspiration and of wisdom, attitude towards life every day was always positive and encouraging I am lucky to have met you at Duffys for some of my first legal drinks in Denver! And it was an honor to work with you at Marlowes, You’ll be missed by many.

    September 11th, 2020 at 7:37am
    Ronda Curtis

    Knowing Johnny these past 26 years has been quite special. He knew how to make your heart smile, even if it was hurting. I was honored when he handed me his apron, on Duffy’s last night, as the first person he ever let work his end of the bar.
    God speed my friend.

    September 11th, 2020 at 8:08pm
    Max Jackinski

    Nobody who knew Johnny would say their lives weren’t better because of it.  His kindness, his honesty and of course his laugh, all of which talked me out of more than one bad decision in my life. I could never see enough of him and I’ll miss him.
                          So long, Johnny. RIP

    September 14th, 2020 at 12:06pm
    Grady McGovern

    Great bartender and a great friend.

    September 14th, 2020 at 2:12pm
    Helen Simmons

    John brightened any room that he entered with his East Coast sarcastic sense of humor and contagious smile. Very honored to be his friend since those magical days at Duffy’s Shamrock in the seventies. I will hold you close in my memories and will miss you heaps.

    September 15th, 2020 at 3:02pm
    Ed Jordan

    16 years behind the bar with Johnny was the ultimate life experience For me, he and his brother Gary interacted with everyone on an up close , and personal level, not often seen in the bar business, or any business   Johnny was really kind, generous, and had a great understanding of people from all walks of life. He really did make the world a better place. I Think he would want us all to carryon his celebration of life. Anne Helene, Kathy , Doug,and Steve, and Families please take comfort in knowing Johnny has eternal peace. 

    September 15th, 2020 at 11:43pm
    Tom Gleason

    Johnny, whether it was Duffy’s or Marlowe’s, when you were behind the bar every night was a Friday!  Thank you my friend for so many good times.  Your passing was our loss, but I know your brother Gary and your nephew  Pete are glad to see you!

    September 16th, 2020 at 11:13pm
    Joseph Gergely

    Always there for last call

    September 17th, 2020 at 12:17am
    Darice Henritze

    AH – I think of you every morning and so saddened that you’ve had to experience such a loss at such a young age. I’m so very sorry. Johnny loved you completely and honestly, which makes it all so much harder to bear. I’m just sad for you and everyone who loved him. 

    September 17th, 2020 at 8:43am
    Darice Henritze

    AH – I think of you every morning and so saddened that you’ve had to experience such a loss at such a young age. I’m so very sorry. Johnny loved you completely and honestly, which makes it all so much harder to bear. I’m just sad for you and everyone who loved him. 

    September 17th, 2020 at 8:44am

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