July 31, 1919 - September 08, 2016

 

Mom came and said, “Well, Jerry are YOU ready to travel?” And he was.

Funeral services will be at 10AM Tuesday, September 13, 2016 at the Country Manor Chapel in Sartell for Gerald P. Schaefer, 97 of Sartell who died peacefully on Thursday at the Country Manor in Sartell. Deacon David Lindmeier will officiate and burial will be at St. Joseph’s Cemetery, St. Joseph. Friends and family may call one hour prior to services at the Country Manor Chapel in Sartell.

Gerald Peter (Jerry) Schaefer was born July 31, 1919 in St. Martin, MN to John and Elizabeth (Blonigen) Schaefer. The family moved to St. Cloud when Jerry was 4 years old. Jerry attended St. Mary’s grade school, and was a member of the Cathedral High School Class of 1937. In search of greener pastures, Jerry and 4 buddies drove to San Diego, CA and found work in the aircraft industry. In 1942 Jerry returned to St. Cloud and entered the Army Air Corps, training at Dunwoody Institute for the Signal Corps. He spent the war years in Kunming, China, and returned home a Staff Sergeant. His experiences flying over “the Hump” gave him a life-long aversion to air travel!

He met Marie Galama of St. Joseph on a blind date arranged by friends, and they were married on Nov. 25, 1948 while on Thanksgiving break from St. Cloud Teachers College. He graduated in 1949 and joined the St. Cloud Post Office, where he worked for 33 years, retiring in 1980. He also volunteered and managed the St. Cloud Federal Employees Credit Union for 35 years.

Jerry was an avid golfer, and was the last surviving member of the original board of directors of Wapicada Golf Course. Their goal was to create a public course in the St. Cloud-Foley area that was open to everyone, and they succeeded. Jerry and co-founder Len Zylla continued to enjoy the course into their 90’s. Jerry played his last round at age 94.

Jerry and Marie made yearly winter drives to south Texas for a winter break, and also enjoyed their evenings out with friends. Jerry was an active member of St. Paul’s parish, the East Side VFW and American Legion Post 76. After retirement he volunteered at the St. Cloud VA and the Whitney Senior Center.

Jerry is survived by his children Jan Strommen of St. Cloud, John (Carole), Houston, TX and Julie Anderson, Fountain Hills, AZ, and grandchildren Josh Anderson, Phoenix, AZ, Sarah Anderson, Scottsdale, AZ, Anne Strommen Keene (Luke), Woodbury, MN, Luke Schaefer, Seattle, WA and Daniel Schaefer, Houston, TX, and great-grandaughter Rosella Marie Keene, Woodbury, MN. He was preceded in death by his wife of 66 years, Marie, son-in-law Paul Strommen and siblings Genevieve, Roman and Otto Schaefer.
Awaiting Jerry at the first tee box in Heaven are his life-long foursome Len Zylla, Eddie Theis, Ed Kujawa and many other buddies. Hit ‘em straight, Dad!

The family would like to thank the staff at Country Manor-Villa Apartments, Rapid Recovery and Garden Cottage for their loving care.

Memorials are preferred to Cathedral High School, Poor Clare's Monastery or the Country Manor Foundation.