Gerald (Jerry) Berton Kleindienst, age 86, died peacefully at home, surrounded by his loving family on June 15, 2016 in Bakersfield California. He was born in Winslow, Arizona on October 30,1929 to John and Martha Kleindienst, and spent his early years living in Grand Canyon National Park Village. He and his older brother Joe enjoyed many adventures there including an early foray into business selling "soda pops" to thirsty tourists.
At the age of 12 his parents relocated to Bakersfield, where he later graduated from KCHS Bakersfield High School in 1947. Jerry was involved in many extra-curricular activities, serving as Vice President of the Student Body in his senior year, and lettering in Track and Field. He as an active member of the Order of DeMolay, Bakersfield Chapter. After graduating from Bakersfield Junior College, he attended UCLA earning a degree in Business Administration in 1951.
On July 29, 1951, Jerry married the love of his life, Jane Holson, in old St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Bakersfield. They began their married life in Culver City, CA where they stayed for 47 years raising their two daughters, Janet and Judy. They were happily married just short of 65 years.
In 1952, Jerry began his career as a Purchasing Agent for Culver City Unified School District, a job that suited his skill with fiscal matters perfectly. After 20 years, he became Director of Purchasing and Stores for Palos Verdes Unified School District, retiring in 1986 after 15 years of service. He was a Charter Member of the Culver City Junior Chamber of Commerce, and a Charter Member of BPOE Culver City Lodge 1917 giving his time and energy to both organizations. Jerry was a past president of the California Association of School Business Officials (CASBO). He and Jane remained active in the Episcopal Church attending St. Mary's in Palms and St. Bedes in Mar Vista, where he served as Junior Warden. Jerry enjoyed exploring the greater Los Angeles area and the LA Harbor, and annual family camping trips at Bass Lake. After the children were in college, Jane and Jerry began traveling far and wide including a trip to England and Scotland, several cruises, and road trips across the United States. They made a special effort to attend reunions at Grand Canyon every few years, along with his brother Joe and wife Grace.
Jane and Jerry returned to Bakersfield in 1998, where he became a member of Sons In Retirement (SIRS), and attended Trinity Anglican Church.
Jerry was preceded in death by his parents, John and Martha Kleindienst, daughter Janet Murphy, and grandson Jake Murphy.
He is survived by his loving wife Jane of Bakersfield, CA, daughter Judy (Tom) Walters of Morro Bay, CA, son-in-law Robert Murphy of Wofford Heights, CA, brother C. Joseph Kleindienst of Pine Grove, CA, granddaughters Erin (Peter) Zaremba of Philomath, OR, Julia (Aaron) Payne of Portland, OR, great grandchildren Bodhin, Mateo, and Miles, and many members of his extended family.
The family would like to thank Hoffman Hospice of Bakersfield, and Around the Clock Companion Care for their dedicated and loving care of Jerry during the last six months. Jerry touched everyone who came into his home due to his kind and sweet nature, the example of his love for Jane and family, and his gratitude for the attention and care they provided.
A Celebration of Life will be held Friday, June 24, 2016, at All Saints Anglican Church, 3200 Gosford Rd., Bakersfield, CA at 11:00 AM. Reception will follow.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Trinity Anglican Church Memorial Fund at 5100 California Ave., Suite 108, Bakersfield, CA 93309.
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