CSM (ret) Gerald Lee Derr (Jerry) passed away in Campbellsville, Kentucky on Dec. 19, 2020 after a long illness at his home.
Jerry was born August 29, 1934 in Fort Sheridan, Illinois, and was the oldest son of SM SGT (ret) Gerald Dawson (USAF) and Bonnie Lee (Greer) Derr.
Jerry served in the Army for 23 years, serving tours in Vietnam, Indochina, Europe and the both coast of the United States. After his active duty service, he moved to Southport, North Carolina where he was one of the first JROTC instructors in Brunswick County serving in the beginning all three high schools and eventually settling at South Brunswick High school for the remainder of his teaching career. SGM Derr as known to his students was a much loved and admired teacher who left a lasting impression on not only his JROTC students but all students who passed through the halls of South Brunswick High School.
Jerry is preceded in death by his wife Gayla Dean Mayes Derr, stepfather Alexander Goulet, brother Ronald D Derr, sister in law Kay Derr and his eldest son Gerald L Derr Jr (Butch).
Jerry is survived by sons David J Derr Sr and wife Sally of Sanford, Florida, Marc A Derr Sr and wife Dawn of Rice Lake, Wisconsin, daughters Teresa G Warren and husband Scott of Jonestown, Pennsylvania, Denita D Creech and husband Cleveland of Campbellsville, Kentucky and Denise Derr of Athens, Alabama. He is also survived by 17 grandchildren and a host of great grandchildren.
CSM (ret) Derr will be interred in the Kentucky Veterans Cemetery West in Hopkinsville, Kentucky. A memorial service is being planned by family and former students and will be announced at a later date..
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