Rev. George Gerald

Rev. George Gerald "Jerry" Somers
(1926 - 2009)


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General Details

Name: Rev. George Gerald "Jerry" Somers
Nick Name: Papa
Gender: Male
Age: 82 years old
Lived: Saturday, 30 October 1926 - Friday, 25 September 2009

My Story


George Gerald "Jerry" Somers was born October 30, 1926 in Quakertown, Pennsylvania, to Harry M. Somers and Minnie Bickel Somers, and died September 25, 2009 in Sugar Land, TX. The twelfth of 14 children, Jerry was raised on a dairy farm (Somers Dairy & Somerdale Dairy) during the Great Depression. Salutatorian of his high school, he attended Muhlenberg College in Pennsylvania and, at 17 joined the Navy and became a carrier pilot on The Lexington at the end of World War II.

While stationed at the Naval Air Station in Corpus Christi, TX, Jerry met and married a local girl named Barbara "Babs" Pearce. They had two children together, Sherry and Scott, before Babs tragically succumbed to polio on Mother's Day, 1952. Through his mother-in-law, Jerry was introduced to Nancy Jane Wise of Corpus Christi, TX, and they were married in September 1956. Together they had three more children, Brent, Claire and Janet.


Jerry was very active in First United Methodist Church, Corpus Christi, holding practically every lay position in the church, including Sunday School Teacher, Lay Preacher, District Lay Leader, Methodist Youth Fellowship Counselor, committeeman and Scoutmaster. After retirement, and the end of his second marriage in 1992, he finally took the plunge and became a local pastor in the United Methodist Church. He served as Associate Pastor of St. Peter's by the Sea, Corpus Christi; First United Methodist, Fredericksburg; and First United Methodist, Kerrville. While in Fredericksburg, he met and married Beverly Ann Coppedge Somers, also originally from Corpus Christi, and they lived in the Texas Hill Country for over 10 years.

In addition to the Methodist Church, Jerry was also active in Boy Scouts of America, Camp Fire Girls, Reserve Officers Association, Salvation Army, Kiwanis Club and Walk to Emmaus, He loved playing softball, basketball and tennis, and was a big sports fan. He also enjoyed word games and telling jokes, and had a prodigious memory for facts and history.

After retirement from the ministry, and his second open heart surgery, Jerry moved in 2005 to The Terrace Retirement Home in Sugar Land, TX, where he quickly immersed himself in the life and pulse of this community. In addition to serving as "Resident President" and interim pastor, his previously undetected gift as a soloist became a passion, and introduced him to Dolores "Dodie" Clark, the church pianist.  They found love unexpectedly and married June 14, 2009. On the evening of his death, they had both drifted off to sleep, and he slipped away while holding his beloved's hand.


Jerry Somers will be remembered for his devotion to his family, his service as a Naval Aviator, his hard work and willingness to pitch in wherever needed, his good humor and bad jokes, his irrepressible personality, his love of country and his love of God.

Jerry is survived by his wife, Dodie Clark Somers; three sisters, Shirley, Jean and Harriet; a sister-in-law, Helen (Byron), his children, Sherry Willome (Tom), Scott (Isa), Brent (Peesh), Claire Ortiz (Rick), and Janet Ely (Mark), as well as 9 grandchildren: Jason (Christi), Sarah (Ross), Andy (Jackie), Jeff, Trey, Avery, Jake, Emily and Austin; and a prospective great-grandson expected in February to Jackie and Andy, as well as Dodie's three children Rusty, Candi and Christi, and their families.

In lieu of flowers, Jerry requested memorials be made to Susan G. Komen - Houston Affiliate (in honor of Janet Somers Ely), the American Heart Association, and the Salvation Army.


Military Decorations for Lt. Commander G. G. Somers:

Aviator Wings, 1947

Enlisted Good Conduct Medal

American Campaign Medal, World War II

European African Middle Eastern Campaign Medal, WWII

European Occupation Service Medal, WWII

Victory Medal, WWII

Honorable Discharge

Armed Forces Reserve Medal

20-Year Naval Reserve Medal

Retired Reserve

Certificate of Recognition, Cold War Service 1946-1991

Sons of the American Revolution

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May you peace in heaven.


Fathers Name: Harry M. Somers
Mothers Name: Minnie Bickel Somers
Spouse's Name: Delores "Dodie" Clark Somers, Beverly Ann Coppedge Somers, Nancy Jane Wise, Barbara "Babs" Pearce
Children's Names: Sherry Somers Willome, Scott Roger Somers, Brent Randall Somers, Claire Ann Ortíz, Janet Lynn Somers Ely
Siblings Names: Gladys, Shirley Grace, Ethel Jean, Harriette Louise, Homer Charles, Paul Bickel, Hazel Edith, Arlene, Miana Ruth, Marshall Franklin, Byron James, Annabelle, Wayne Allen
Country of Birth: USA
Country of Residence: USA
City of Residence: Sugar Land, TX
Occupation: Community
Marital Status: Married
Religion: Other Christian


Favourite Charity: Susan G. Komen, The American Heart Association, The Salvation Army
Other Interests:
Christian Ministry; Sports, particularly Softball, Basketball, Tennis; travel


Place of Passing: Sugar Land, TX
Date of Passing: 25 September 2009
Cause of Passing: Sudden Cardiac Death
Type of Funeral: Memorial Service
Place of Burial: Seaside Memorial Park, Corpus Christi, TX
Plot Number: 191
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