Jerome “Jerry” Merle Wasson, 83, passed away suddenly on May 7, 2022, at his beloved home in Centralia. Jerry (also known as Ace, Jerome and dad) was the second of three children born to Merle and Catherine Wasson. He grew up in Spokane, Washington where he attended Gonzaga Preparatory High School where he excelled in football, basketball, and in track. He was also an elite pole vaulter. Following graduation in 1957, he obtained a full ride scholarship to play basketball at Gonzaga University where he lettered for three years and met our loving mother, Marilyn Nordby. Jerry graduated in 1961 with a bachelor’s of arts degree in sociology. He and Marilyn married shortly thereafter on June 10, 1961. He continued his education and received his master’s degree in psychology/sociology from Washington State University in 1963. That same year, he began his professional career as a probation officer with the State of Washington Juvenile Rehabilitation. In 1969, he went back to school and obtained a second master’s degree in social work from the University of Washington. He retired in 1994, as the director of juvenile rehabilitation and opened a private counseling business in Centralia, Washington, where he worked serving others for the next 15 years.
Jerry enjoyed anything to do with the outdoors, especially sports. He played intramural basketball and ran marathons well into his 50s. He enjoyed hunting, fishing and golf. Boy, did he enjoy golf. Although he was a respected professional and an accomplished athlete, his greatest attributes were as a husband of 61 years and as a father to five boys. He led by example, through his diligent hard work, his attention to detail, and in putting family first. He taught his family to be loving, be fair, and strive for consistent improvement in whatever we chose to do.
Jerry was preceded in death by his parents Merle and Catherine Wasson, and his brother Grant Wasson. Jerry is survived by his loving wife Marilyn and five sons Chris (Gelinda) with grandchildren CJ, Jason (Cami) and Blaize; Tim (Janice) with grandchildren Jake and Nate; Kevin (Darla) with grandchildren MacKenzie and Nolan; Greg (Tammy) with grandchildren Conner, Brett and Lauren; and John (Amy) with grandchildren Cole and Von. They will miss him dearly including his voice in the grandstands at sporting events and in the background coaching them through life. He is also survived by his brother Gary Wasson. Though his death was unexpected, he had expressed he was not afraid of dying. Jerry said he was satisfied with his life and wouldn't have changed a thing. He was a great man and will be missed by all who knew him.
A funeral mass will be held at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Centralia, Washington at 11 a.m. on Friday, June 3, 2022. A celebration of life will follow at the Riverside Golf Course, 1451 NW Airport Road in Chehalis.