Gerald Gabriel Salmon

Obituary
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  • "Aunt Kathy, Sheila, John and Jerry, so very sorry for your..."
    - Mary Salmon
  • "Kathy and Family, Just found out about your great loss as..."
  • "Kathy, so so sorry to hear about your husband. What a man!!..."
    - Valerie Kane
  • "Kathy Becky and I are very, very sad for your loss. Jerry..."
    - Rod Skotty
  • "Skiing brought Jerry into our lives. For many winters he..."
    - Ernie and Jodi Jason
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Gerald Gabriel Salmon, 75, a native of Scranton, died at home in Vestal, N.Y., on Feb. 5, 2014, surrounded by his family, whom he loved with all his heart. Jerry was preceded in death by his father, Gerald; his mother, Margaret Spain Salmon; brother, Maurice and wife, Lois; and his sister, Louise.

Jerry is survived by his wife, Kathleen Higgins Salmon, his high school sweetheart to whom he was married for 49 years; his daughter, Sheila and husband, David Bagnick, Vestal; his son, Jerry and wife, Jill, and their children, Timothy and Lyla, Thorndale; and his son, John and wife, Bethany, and their son, Griffin Patrick, New York City.

He is also survived by a sister-in-law, Betty Higgins Sivolella and husband, Nick; his brothers-in-law, Bob and wife, Nancy Higgins; Tom and wife, Joan Higgins; and Dan and wife, Marianne Higgins; as well as many nephews and nieces and their children.

Jerry was a graduate of Scranton Prep, where he was voted "wittiest" of his senior class. He graduated from the University of Scranton and joined IBM's Space Guidance Center in Owego, N.Y., where, as a junior engineer, he worked on the early space program computers. In 1963, on a military leave of absence from IBM, he was commissioned as an ensign in the Navy, after completing Officer Candidate School in Newport, R.I. He was then selected to attend the Navy's Cryptography School and was assigned to Norfolk, Va., naval base as a communications officer for the commander of the Atlantic Submarine Force, where he served until his honorable discharge as a Lieutenant JG in 1967. Jerry then rejoined IBM Owego in the marketing organization, where he spent the rest of his career until his retirement in 1992.

He traveled much of the world on behalf of IBM, including Australia, China and all the capitals of Western Europe. His happiest work achievement was his leadership of IBM's American, British and Italian marketing team, which contributed to the IBM win on Great Britain's Merlin Program, the UK's primary anti-submarine helicopter. At the time, the multibillion-dollar award was the largest single contract in the history of IBM. For this and other contract awards, Jerry was awarded the Federal Systems President's Award three times, the most ever given to an IBM Owego employee.

At best a bogey golfer, he once had a hole-in-one at St. Margaret's Golf Club in Dublin, Ireland. Luck of the Irish! He relished all sports, especially tennis, golf and skiing. He savored politics, writing and sticking up for society's underdogs.

True to his Irish roots, Jerry cherished his family and friends above all. His love for his grandchildren was over the moon. His favorite saying was carpe diem, and he lived it to the last.
Published in Scranton Times on Feb. 8, 2014
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