Jerry King of Nashville, passed away peacefully on Wednesday, September 20, while visiting his daughter in Sunset, South Carolina.
He was born in Harrisburg, Illinois to Hurley and Beulah King and grew up on his family farm. He attended school at the Cain and Liberty one room grade schools. He graduated from Harrisburg High School and attended Murray State College. In 1958, Jerry was invited to try out as a pitcher for the St. Louis Cardinals baseball team at Busch Stadium. Although he did not make the team, it was always a highlight of his life.
He met Marilyn Gellerman in Springfield while pursuing a career in the funeral business. They married in May of 1963 and moved to Chicago where Jerry worked for a funeral home. After graduation from Worsham Mortuary School, Jerry and Marilyn then moved to Taylorville where he worked at Ned Connelly Funeral home. In 1966, Jerry and Marilyn purchased Smith funeral home in Nashville in which he operated as King Funeral Home until 1975. At that time, Jerry and Marilyn purchased their first nursing home and continued in the long-term care business to date.
Jerry was a member of Grace United Methodist Church, Shriners and The Lion’s Club. Sports were a passion for Jerry. He loved to play golf and enjoyed watching baseball and basketball games. He coached his son in golf, basketball and baseball whether it was on or off the course, court or field. He also loved watching his grandsons play sports. Jerry enjoyed fishing and hunting with his son, grandsons and friends and told many fishing and hunting stories. Most days Jerry would be found outside where he liked to garden and work in his yard. He and Marilyn lived in Bonita Springs, Fla., during the winter months. They enjoyed traveling and entertaining their many close friends.
Marilyn passed away on January 18 of this year. Also preceding him in death were his parents.
Jerry is survived by his sister Shirley (Lee) Clayton of Nashville; his children, Michelle (Bill) Hirschfeld of Sunset, S.C., Denise (Michael) King Mullen of St. Louis, Keith (Amie) King of O’Fallon, Leslie (Tim) Pedtke of Ashley and Elizabeth King of Ellisville, Mo. He is also survived by his grandchildren, Bryce and Bryn Hirschfeld, Troy, Cole, and Luke Pedtke and Lilian and Hazel Todorov; and a cousin, Dr. Charles (Marlene) Johnson of Carrier Mills.
Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, September 27 at Grace United Methodist church in Nashville with Rev. William Bunnage officiating. Burial will follow in Greenwood Cemetery in Nashville. Friends may call from 4 to 7 p.m. on Tuesday and again from 7:30 to 9 a.m. on Wednesday at Styninger Funeral Home in Nashville and one hour prior to services at the church.
Memorial contributions may be to Nashville Lions Club, Nashville Theatre, Nashville Golf Course, Nashville High School or St. Ann Catholic School.
Online expressions of sympathy may be made at www.styningerfuneralhomes.com or on the funeral home’s Facebook page.