Jerry Michael “Toad” Wilson, 57, of Brookings-Harbor, passed away Thursday, March 7, 2013, in his Winchuck River home.
Jerry was born April 11, 1955, in Grants Pass to Robert “Bob” and Elsie (Hildebrand) Wilson.
Jerry worked hard and played hard and wouldn’t have it any other way. He was a loud and very loving person. The souls of those who had the chance to spend time in his presence were touched with words of wisdom and love from his heart.
Jerry graduated from Grants Pass High School in 1973. He earned a degree in welding from Rogue Community College. He then traveled to Alaska to work on the pipeline until he lost he right leg in a motorcycle accident. He later pursued the family tradition of becoming a logger running a yarder for approximately 30 years. He sometimes took a break to drive long-haul trucks up and down the West Coast with his brother, David. For three or four years, Jerry also had a gold mining claim in the Illinois Valley, which he worked with David and his father Bobby.
Jerry retired at the age of 53, and relaxed at his home up the Winchuck River and enjoyed his gardens and grandbabies.
Jerry enjoyed fishing in lakes, rivers and even the ocean, but most of all with his grandpa Robert Wilson. He loved his Harley bikes – building and riding them, like a bad boy with the wind in his hair and the sun shining down, knowing with that smile on his face life couldn’t be anymore grand. He also enjoyed playing guitar, which he learned to play in the hospital during the process of losing his leg. Anyone who knew Jerry knew he loved to sing. He would brighten up anyone’s day with that loud, warm bellow from that big belly of his.
Jerry is survived by his mother and father Robert and Elsie Wilson; brothers and sisters Debi, Teri, David, Richard, Linda and Darla; son and daughter-in-law Cameron and Ame Wilson; grandbabies Kaia and Adie Wilson; companion Valerie Wilt and son Lamar Bates; nieces and nephews AJ, Aisha, Jimmie and Patina Taylor, Charles, Clinton and Philip Hall, Amber, Olivia and Jessica Wilson, Michael and Andrea Espinosa and many great-nieces and great-nephews.
Jerry was the oldest of seven children. He had many wonderful friends who touched his heart. He will be missed by many and forgotten by few.
We love you Jerry Wilson; we know you were spent, but most of all you were Heaven sent.
A Celebration of Life will be at 11 a.m. on Jerry’s birthday, Thursday, April 11, at White Horse Park, on Upper River Road in Grants Pass.
A Celebration of Life will also be held in Brookings at a later date, to be published in the Pilot.
Submitted by the family.