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Obituary Condolences

JEROME (JERRY) THOMAS SUTERA Dec. 21, 1950 - April 9, 2014 Jerome (Jerry) Thomas Sutera, 63, of Westwood, Kan., passed away peacefully April 9, 2014, in Lincoln, Neb., after a massive stroke. Jerry was born Dec. 21, 1950, in New Orleans, La., to Vincent and Agnes (Carroll) Sutera. His father was in the U.S. Navy, and the family moved multiple times before settling in Westwood in 1965. Since then, Jerry has remained in the "hood" and resided in Westwood for the remainder of his life. He graduated from Bishop Miege High School in 1969 and went on to play football at Wichita State University as #83. Jerry graduated in 1973. At Wichita State he met the love of his life, Linda (Poopsie) Burrus. They were married in 1974. Jerry was a dedicated, selfless and amazing father. After college, Jerry started Sutera's Restaurant with his brothers. Jerry remained in the restaurant business until Linda played him "Cats in the Cradle," and he left the restaurant business to pursue a career in air freight which allowed him more flexibility to coach and/or attend every single one of his kids' soccer, basketball, football games, swim meets, cross country races and other athletic and academic events. Jerry's final and favorite job was being the self-proclaimed "gas man" at Atmos Energy, where he enjoyed giving out free samples. Jerry is survived by his loving and devoted wife, Linda, his daughter, Shawna (Matt Wright), grandchildren, Tommy (9), Meredith (8) and Agnes Rose (4); daughter, Annie (Duane Cravy) and grandchildren, Ivy (2) and Baby Cravy due in August; son, Sam (Soraya DeSouza); his mother Agnes Sutera; his father- in-law, Dave Burrus; siblings, Jim, John (Janet), Joe (Mary Ann), Jeff, Jay, Charlie (Sally) Sutera, Joan (Frank Bartkoski) and Jean (John Sheahan); his Burrus family, who he loved dearly, cousins, nieces, nephews, grandnieces, grandnephews, and countless amazing friends. Jerry was predeceased in death by his father, Vincent Sutera and his mother-in-law, Virginia Burrus. The Rosary will be held at 5 p.m. Friday, April 11, along with eulogies about Jerry at St. Agnes School Gym followed by a visitation until 8 p.m. The Funeral Mass will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday, April 12, at St. Agnes Catholic Church, 5250 Mission Rd., Roeland Park, Kan. Burial following at Resurrection Cemetery in Lenexa, Kan. Luncheon reception to follow at Bishop Miege Commons. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to The Jerry Sutera #83 Fund at CrossFirst Bank, 4707 W. 135th Street, Leawood, KS 66224 or to St. Agnes. Arr.: Skradski Funeral Home, (913) 371-1404. www.skradskifh-kc.com While his family and friends remain heartbroken from their own loss, the countless stories and memories will keep the laughter alive. From his years as "Wild Man Sutera" at Bishop Miege, to Wichita State where he was a member of the 1970 football team who lost teammates and friends in the plane crash in the Rocky Mountains, to his nights at Sutera's restaurant, to being the best father and grandfather to his children and grandchildren and father figure to so many others, Jerry has touched so many people and lives, and brought so much joy, happiness and laughter to others, that his legacy and memory will undoubtedly go on. The world may have become a duller place for those of us on Earth, but one fun party just started up in Heaven.
Published in Kansas City Star on Apr. 11, 2014
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