I served papers on Jeff'* dad and it was highly effective He was too stunned that I processed my own court documents, got a court date, served papers and it only cost me $5 filing fee. Money well spent.
You have to check out the state laws first. Unless the state has a different law, if you are filing the case, you cannot serve the papers to the defendant in person. The alternate option would be to send them via registered mail, however, if he sees the papers, he can refuse the delivery of the papers.
Tracy, in your case, Jeff'* Dad, since he new you, he may have accepted the papers on his own will.
Some of my friends, served the papers themselves to save money, and the case got thrown out of jail. in one case, the defendant did not show up in court and my friend could not show evidence of service since he handed the papers personally without getting a receipt signature. If papers are served in person, the server must file proof of service with court. Or, you can send the papers via US Post Office registered letter and show the proof of receipt and signature of the recipient in court.