Gerald Leroy “Jerry” Erickson, age 86, of Madison passed away on Friday, January 19, 2018 with his family at his side.
He was born on August 27, 1931 in Dodgeville, the son of Clarence and Selma (Olson) Erickson. Jerry graduated Cobb High School in 1950 and served in the US Army from 1951-1953 serving in Alaska at the Army Hospital in Pedro Dome. He was united in marriage to Gena Lee Hughes on October 23, 1954 in Dodgeville. He was a man who loved Mopars, and also loved to make people laugh.
He was preceded in death by his parents; brother Levi and sisters Gladys Proctor and Minerva Martin.
Jerry is survived by his wife Gena of Madison; son, Jerry (Debbie) of Madison; daughter, Sonja (Todd) Wagner of Sun Prairie; step-son, Jim (Karen) Parish of Linden; sisters, Lucille Bickel of Denver CO and Mildred Kelley of Waunakee. He will also be missed by his grandchildren, Eric (Charlene) Erickson of Cottage Grove; Amanda Erickson (Aaron) of Sun Prairie and Heidi Wagner of Sun Prairie; his step grand-children, Justin (Connie) Allen of Madison; Bob (Andrea) Parish of Appleton; Katie (Greg) Wolf of Bonduel and Matt (Tina) Parish of Linden.
Growing up in Dodgeville he loved roller skating, pin-setting at the bowling alley, and playing the saxophone. His senior year the family moved from Dodgeville to Highland and he attended school in Cobb, although his dad had to chain his car to the fencepost to keep him from showing up at Dodgeville High School. He has always attended reunions for both high schools.
As a Korean war veteran, he was a member of the Linden American Legion. He was also a member of the Linden Masonic Lodge. He loved to get people riled up, until everyone in the room was in hysterics. This made him everyone’s favorite uncle. He also enjoyed NASCAR, football, hockey, country music and playing the banjo. But most of all he had a passion for cars -- as long as they were Mopars. He is very well known for keeping a well-running car and is famous for always asking us, “Have you checked your oil today?” His employment years were spent mostly at Dairy Equipment Company, and later American Family Insurance. His post-retirement career was doing what he loved best, driving around and delivering auto parts for Bumper to Bumper until the age of 81.
Gerald’s Grandparents all descended from Norway, settling in the Clyde and Highland Townships. His parents were married in 1916 at Otter Creek Lutheran Church, where his grandfather Gilbert Erickson was a charter member. Gerald was very proud of his Norwegian heritage and vowed to take a trip there someday—as soon as they build a bridge over the ocean.
Masonic Services will be held at 11:00 A.M. Tuesday, January 23, 2018 at the Lulloff-Peterson-Houck Funeral Home in Dodgeville followed by funeral services with Pastor Bernt Tweit officiating. Luncheon will take place at the Dodgeville United Methodist Church in Dodgeville, followed by the burial at Otter Creek Lutheran Cemetery in rural Highland where Military Honors will be accorded by the Linden American Legion Post #493.