Gerald (Jerry) Paul Driscoll, 85, of Clover Valley, died March 2, with family at his side in St. Luke's Hospice after a brief battle with cancer. Jerry was born on July 2, 1927 in the home of a Clover Valley midwife and carried home by horse and wagon. He was the youngest of 10 children born to Donald and Cora Driscoll.
Jerry graduated early from Clover Valley High School to join the U.S. Navy in 1945 and was stationed at Pearl Harbor. He served as a machinist’s mate on a floating dry dock where he became a crane operator on a vessel that worked on submarines. Jerry had a long employment relationship with the DM&IR railroad, beginning at age 15 when he had his first job steaming ore on the docks in Two Harbors. At various points in his career with the DM&IR, he worked as a fireman, brakeman, and he retired as a locomotive engineer in 1990.
Jerry graduated from the University of Minnesota-Duluth with a teaching degree and taught fifth and sixth grades at Lakewood Elementary School from 1964-74 before returning to railroad work.
He met his wife Irene "Harriet" Haugo at the VFW Club in Two Harbors while Harriet was a young teacher in Two Harbors. They were married on October 24, 1953 and spent more than 54 loving years together before Harriet passed on April 8, 2008. During their retirement years, they enjoyed many vacations exploring all 50 states, keeping careful chronicle of their journeys and friendships made along the way.
Valuing hard work all of his life, even after retirement, Jerry measured his success and self-worth by what he had accomplished at the end of each day. He loved spending time with family and friends, cutting wood, raising vegetables, working on farm machinery in his shop and his fishing trips with friends and neighbors.
He was preceded in death by his parents; brothers Bob, Jim and Bill; sisters Olive, Alice, Jean, Margaret, Marian, and baby Marie; and his wife Harriet. Jerry is survived by sons David of Esko and Jonathon of Duluth; grandchildren Joseph of Duluth, Kathleen of Manhattan, Kan., and Tanala of Duluth.
Visitation was from 10-11 a.m., Thursday, March 7, at St. Michael's Church in Lakeside, followed by a funeral mass. Interment will be in the spring.
The family suggests that memorials be made to St. Luke’s Hospice or a favorite charity in Jerry’s name. A special thanks to Bobbi Jo Heskin for her loving care of both dad and mom.
To sign the online register book please visit www.cavallinfuneralhome.com.