Jerry Stickrod

October 27, 2017

SIOUX CITY, Iowa - Jerry Stickrod, 76, of Sioux City, passed away Friday, October 27 at home, under the care of hospice, his wife Julie, and many family members.

A celebration of life service will be held from 6-7 p.m. today, Thursday, November 2, at Waterbury Funeral Home, 4125 Orleans Avenue, Sioux City. Viewing will be from 5-6 p.m. today with family present. Burial will follow at Grandview Cemetery in Grandview, Iowa, on Friday November 3, at 4 p.m. with a celebration of life following at Island United Methodist Church Fellowship Hall, 2598 Stuart Road, Muscatine, Iowa. Memorials in his name can be directed either to STARS (www.scstars.org), which provides animal therapy for children with disabilities or by completing an act of kindness in Jerry’s name.

Jerry was born August 29, 1941, in Muscatine, Iowa.

He graduated from Louisa Muscatine High School in 1960. From 1961-1965, he served in the U.S. Air Force. He later graduated from West Texas State University, became a teacher of special education and elementary education at various schools in rural Texas and later in Sioux City, Iowa. His students knew him as both teacher and friend — big-hearted, playful, and invested in them unconditionally.

Jerry spent hours of his early and middle years fishing on the Mississippi River, and later with his sons in Oklahoma. He knew his way around catfish and crawdads and homegrown tomatoes better than most. He loved classic cars, John Wayne, pranks, stories, coin collecting, Christmas ornaments, but he especially loved animals and children, the later of which loved him back with equal exuberance. Without fail, he seemed to be every dog’s favorite visitor. He once tamed a squirrel that would follow him from the backyard into his living room to take pecans from his outstretched hand. Children adored him, too. Any kid in Jerry’s life heard the words, “Come to Papa!” early and often and when they did they were held and hugged and sang to. When those same children grew older, Jerry was ready with spending cash, a jumpstart, a place to crash, and a sympathetic ear.

He found delight in simple things — a good song, an old coin, a warm grilled cheese — but most especially in people. Because of that, everyone who knew Jerry felt accepted and adored. He was a big presence with a trove of stories, an easy laugh and a huge heart. He’ll be missed dearly.

Jerry is survived by his wife Julie Stickrod, with whom he nearly perfected the Texas two-step. His absence will be felt by his seven children, David Stickrod and his wife Christine of Amarillo, Texas, Thomas Stickrod and his wife Michelle, of Amarillo, Kirk Stickrod of Amarillo, Laurie Stickrod of Amarillo, Kristina Ruby, of Keller, Texas, Jennifer Hicks and her husband Bill, of St. Paul, Minnesota, and Amy Delaney and her husband Charlie, of Dakota Dunes, South Dakota. Jerry was the proud Papa to 13 grandchildren: Christopher, Melody, Nathan Jake, Mackenzie, Bailey, Kennedy, Taylor, Riley, Max, Elle, Elliot and Oliver, and two great-grandchildren; his brother William Stickrod and wife Diana of Grandview, Iowa, Judith Buster, of Eustace, Texas, many nieces and nephews, and his cherished former wife, Anna Stickrod.

He was preceded in death by his uncle, Ray, and parents Kirk and Bertha (Atkins) Stickrod.

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