It is impossible to put into words what the loss of Jerry is to so many different organizations, groups, friends and, of course, the deepest loss is to his loved ones. But if it is possible to have a time remembering a person and be left with joy, this was it.
First of all, I knew Jerry was active in our community and county, in our church, etc – but I had no idea the extent of his participation and the extent of the love all had for him! The Laguna Niguel Mayor, Laurie Davies, gave a wonderful eulogy which included a recitation of asking for people to stand when the group they were with was mentioned. It started with the best thing that ever happened to Jerry, which of course was Marilyn, followed by his family. Everyone clapped for that. After that came a recitation of group after group, organization after organization – people standing at each mention. At the end we were all standing to crashing applause.
Did you know how involved Jerry was for good? He was one of us, an LNPC Christian and, if that is the only way you saw him, you would be right in respecting that very important part of his life. But if you were at the Memorial on Thursday, you had the opportunity to draw in your breath and be amazed at the capacity the man had for doing so much to help others individually and in groups and to move governing issues forward.
But, Jerry also had a softer side as his granddaughter noted in her lovely eulogy to her grandfather – who had given her ongoing advice, the last which was the night before he went into the hospital. The missing of that wonderful figure in her life will remain, but so will the advice and love he had for her.
If you knew Jerry, be assured you knew an unusual man whose many gifts were so beautifully unrolled in front of a packed out LNPC sanctuary with rows of extra chairs. Thank you, Jerry for that parting gift of seeing our church overflowing – a salute from you to us that our future can hold nothing but more praises for God. We can use Jerry as an example of giving and moving forward to spread the good of Christ.
And his dear wife, Marilyn and his family were there to accept the beautiful gathering response, the flag from the military and the tribute speeches at the reception. It was a first class afternoon for a first class man with a gracious and awed family by the outpouring of love and respect and great numbers of well wishers to shared their grief, loss and happy remembrances.
Thanks be to God for this man and his family.
With love in Christ,