Gerald (Gerry) Gettman passed suddenly May 10, 2012, at the age of 72.
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He was born April 26, 1940, in Cheyenne, Wyoming to Lydia and Abraham Gettman. His family moved to California when he was four years old. They resided in Redwood City, California where Gerry attended and graduated from Sequoia High School in 1958. He served four years in the Army during the Vietnam War. After the Army he worked for a short while at Mill Cabinet Company before going to work for United Airlines where he was a mechanic for 28 years.
In 1977 Gerry moved to South San Francisco. In 1989 he married the love of his life and his soulmate, Jo Ann Hart Jones, and became a step-father to her 3 boys. Gerry retired from United in 1995 and moved his family to Lakeport.
Along with his wife, Jo Ann, he did a lot of volunteer work for the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation. He was very passionate about the Foundation and their work. He was also a member of the Lakeport Elks Lodge #2704 and took delight in being their Santa Claus at Christmas.
Gerry was a gentle, caring person who loved his family and loved life. He liked to travel and had seen a lot of the world. He loved sports and was an avid 49ers, Sharks and Giants fan. His true love in sports was car racing and oh, what a fan of Dale Earnhardt Sr.
He is survived by his loving wife of 23 years and his stepson, Mike (Denise) Jones; two grandchildren and one great-grandson; sister, Joyce Eckhardt; sister-in-law, Marilyn Gettman; nieces, Janet (Ron) Gettman, Linda (Gary) Judson, Connie (Dave) Gildersleeve, and Marsha Peterson; nephews, Gary (Cindy) Eckhardt, and Bill (Michelle) Eckhardt; also many great nieces and nephews.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Lydia and Abraham Gettman; brother, James Gettman; brother-in-law, Walter Eckhardt; and stepsons, Matthew Black (1999) and Mark Mullen (2000).
A Memorial Service will be held at the Lakeport Elk's Lodge, 3775 Lakeshore Blvd., Lakeport at 1 p.m., Saturday, June 16, followed by a Celebration of Gerry's life and a pot luck dinner.
Gerry would prefer donations to one of his favorite charities, either the Matt Black Memorial Scholarship Fund or the National Fallen Firefighters Fund. He was passionate about both.
Matt Black Scholarship Fund Lakeport Fire, 455 N. Main St., Lakeport, CA 95453 or National Fallen Firefighters Foundation, P.O. Drawer 498, Emmitsburg, MD 21727, or online for the NFFF at Firehero.org
For further information call Chapel of the Lakes, 263-0357 or 994-5611 or visit www.chapelofthelakes.com
Published in Lake County Record-Bee from May 19 to May 25, 2012