July 7, 1950-July 23, 2008
Detroit Lakes native Gerald R. "Jerry" Sullivan, Jr., 58, of Faribault, Minn., died Wednesday, July 23, 2008 at home following a lengthy illness.
Gerald Robert Sullivan, Jr., was born to Jerry and Dolores (Baker) Sullivan on July 7, 1950 in Detroit Lakes, where he grew up appreciating the outdoors, lakes and his love of animals, especially horses. He also learned some of his father's trade as a plumber; later he would expand that skill into commercial construction, when he moved to the Minneapolis area. He married for the first time in 1970 and had a daughter, Christina.
In 1977, Jerry married a second time and had a son, Anthony. During this time Jerry and his family moved back to Detroit Lakes for a short period of time to tend to his ailing father, who died in 1980. In 1982, Jerry moved to Faribault, where he worked as a construction superintendent for a company that renovated historical buildings in downtown Faribault.
During this time he also acquired a pilot's certificate, but had to stop flying due to ill health. At the time of Jerry's death he was married to Estelle (Vigdahl), whom he wed in Faribault in 1984. They just celebrated their 24th wedding anniversary on Jan. 8. They had two children, Jairus and Solana.
Jerry was baptized in 1976 as one of Jehovah's Witnesses, and enjoyed sharing the bible truths he learned with others regularly. Jerry, with his wife Estelle and family, had the privilege to be assigned to go to remote areas of the U.S. to participate in a voluntary ministry, each time camping and incorporating family time, good Christian fellowship and recreation with other witnesses of Jehovah.
Because Jehovah's Witnesses are united worldwide, he was able to attend the local Kingdom Hall in various areas he lived. Jerry and his family moved to Iowa, where they lived for many years, first in the Clear Lake area, and later in Garner and Clarion before finally moving to Faribault.
Jerry greatly appreciated and took comfort from the support and genuine Christian love and concern the brothers and sisters demonstrated toward himself and his family through the good and hard times.
Jerry and his wife Estelle for most of their marriage were self-employed, and operated a janitorial distributorship and cleaning service. Later they incorporated their enjoyment of antiques and collectibles by adding to the business an antique store and auction service. Jerry graduated from auction school in 1994, and regularly had consignment and estate sales.
Jerry is survived by his wife, Estelle; two sons, Anthony Sullivan of Minneapolis and Jairus Sullivan of Faribault; two daughters, Christina Sullivan of Columbia Heights, Minn., and Solana Sullivan of Faribault; six grandchildren; two sisters, Kathy Coleman of Detroit Lakes and Jean (Rick) Moyer of Staunton, Va.; as well as numerous nieces and nephews.
Preceding Jerry in death were his parents and a brother, Patrick Sullivan, who died as an infant.
Memorial services are scheduled for 4 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 3, at the Kingdom Hall of Jehovah's Witnesses, 2618 Park Ave. NW, Faribault, with Brother Gerald Smith of the Clarion, Iowa congregation giving a talk on the reflection of Jerry's life and sharing an encouraging discourse using the Bible.
Burial will be at a cemetery near Hayfield, Minn. Arrangements are being completed by the Boldt Funeral Home in Faribault. Visit boldtfuneralhome.com for information and guest book.