Jerry Daniel Deshong, a man admired and cherished by all who had the privilege of knowing him, has passed away at the age of 81. Born on April 15, 1942, in Pryor, Oklahoma, Jerry's life was a testament to hard work, dedication, and a remarkable zest for life. Jerry's career unfolded in the aviation industry as an inspector at American Airlines, where he dedicated an impressive 42 years of service. With a meticulous eye for detail and an unwavering commitment to excellence, he left an indelible mark on the field. The integrity and professionalism he displayed during his time with American Airlines were traits that his colleagues greatly appreciated. Prior to his successful career in aviation, Jerry proudly served his country in the United States Air Force. His time in the Air Force allowed him to develop invaluable skills and a deep sense of patriotism. The dedication Jerry displayed while serving his country was truly admirable and reflected his selflessness. At the young age of 21, during his time stationed in North Dakota at the IBM Missile Site while serving in the Air Force, Jerry's life took an unexpected turn when he was introduced to the world of Ham radio by his sergeant Herb Schurgin. This introduction ignited a lifelong passion for communication with people from all corners of the globe. For over six decades, he immersed himself in this artform and enjoyed countless conversations with individuals from diverse backgrounds. One of Jerry's proudest accomplishments was being a 55-year member of the Gene Autry Masonic Lodge #185 Catoosa, Oklahoma and was proud to have become a 32nd Degree Master Mason. As a dedicated member of this fraternal organization, he embodied their principles of brotherhood, charity, and goodwill towards all. Jerry's love for nature and agricultural pursuits was evident through his beloved ranch called Butterfly Acres. Tending to his land brought him immense joy, and it was there that he found solace and tranquility. Raising his 40 cows and 2 bulls, driving his beloved Belarus tractor, and cutting and baling hay became cherished aspects of his life. He also had a special love for his Chesapeake Bay Retriever, Miss Red Lucy, who was Jerry’s constant shadow. Jerry married Penny on May 20, 2000, in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Together, they formed an unbreakable bond rooted in love, mutual respect, and shared interests. Their union was a reflection of the profound happiness they brought to each other's lives. Jerry Daniel Deshong's memory will forever live on in the hearts of those who loved him. His unwavering dedication to duty, his passion for communication, and his appreciation for the simple joys of life serve as an inspiration to all who knew him.
Funeral services will be held at 10:00 a.m., Friday, September 8, 2023 in the Shipman's Funeral Home Chapel with Father Valentine officiating. Burial will follow in the Fort Gibson National Cemetery with military honors being rendered. Visitation will be held from 6:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m., Thursday, September 7, 2023 at Shipman's Funeral Home in Pryor. To leave his family a message, please visit his Tribute Wall at www.shipmansfuneralhome.com. Arrangements are under the direction of Shipman's Funeral & Cremation Service.
Jerry is survived by his wife, Penny Deshong of the home; step daughter, Kimberly Kranz of Inola, Oklahoma; loving grandson and Jerry’s sidekick of 25 years, Joseph Kranz of Inola, Oklahoma; step sister, Kay Butterfield and husband Ron of Tulsa, Oklahoma; lifelong friends, Bonnie Hammond and husband David, who constantly showed their love and support; numerous nieces and nephews; and many other relatives and friends. He is preceded in death by his parents, Bill and Alma (Pendley) Deshong; and stepson, Charles Kranz.