Gerald “Jerry” Herbert Schaefer, age 77, of Dassel, died Saturday, Oct. 26, 2019, at his residence.
Mass of Christian Burial will take place Saturday, Nov. 2 at 11 a.m. at St. John’s Catholic Church in Darwin with Father Brian Mandel officiating, followed by interment at St. John’s Catholic Church Cemetery.
There will be visitation Friday, Nov. 1 from 4 to 7 p.m. at the Johnson Funeral Home in Dassel, with a Knights of Columbus Rosary at 4 p.m., and parish prayers at 7 p.m. Visitation will continue Saturday at the church, one hour prior to the Mass.
Arrangements are with the Johnson Funeral Home, Dassel.
Gerald was born Aug. 15, 1942, in St. Cloud, the son of Herbert and Irene (Dingman) Schaefer. He grew up in the Belgrade area until the family moved to Sauk Centre.
Jerry was united in marriage to Elaine Welle June 15, 1965, at St. Peter and Paul Catholic Church in Richmond. The couple made their home in the Clearwater area before moving to Dassel.
Jerry milked 70 head of milking cows and raised hogs on his farm, and was a hard worker. He loved the land and enjoyed farming.
In 1995, Jerry was employed as head custodian at the Dassel-Cokato High School, and later was employed by the district as a groundskeeper.
Upon retiring from the school district in 2013, Jerry also spent time mowing lawn at the Education Center in rural Cokato, and at the St. John’s Catholic Church grounds in Darwin.
Whenever the church needed a hand or a project done, Jerry was willing to help. His faith and family were a meaningful part of his life.
Jerry also enjoyed spending time with his family at the cabin and camping. He loved to go fishing and deer hunting with his son and sons-in-law. He enjoyed Sunday drives around the countryside, looking at the crops and the fall leaves.
Jerry could fix anything, and had a talent for decorative iron work. His wife, children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren were the light of his life.
He was a kind, compassionate, caring man, who loved his family and friends with all his might, and he will be deeply missed.
Jerry is survived by his wife, Elaine Schaefer of Dassel; three children, Karen (Todd) Athmann of Becker, Marilyn (Tony) Kremer of Avon, and Doug (Felicia) Schaefer of Prior Lake; six grandchildren: Jessica Schaefer, Katelyn Athmann, Kalley Athmann, Logan Kremer, Luke Kremer, and Haley Schaefer; and two great-grandchildren, Lili Alberson and Marlee Alberson.
He is further survived by siblings, Joan Tamm of St. Cloud, Dan (Ginny) Schaefer of Pierz, Jane Miller of Eagan, Mary Schaefer of Massachusetts, Fred (Janel) Schaefer of Annandale, Shirley (Jon) Schmit, and Jolene (Eleanor) Schaefer, all of St. Cloud; and a brother-in-law, Ervin VanBeck of Apple Valley.
Jerry was preceded in death by his parents; sisters, Carol Borgerding and her husband, Roger Borgerding, and Loraine VanBeck; and a brother-in-law, Gene Tamm.