Gerald (Jerry) Curttright
Gerald (Jerry) Curttright, 93, passed away at home on October 17, 2021 in Goodyear, Arizona. He was born in Spencer, Iowa on January 18, 1928 to Scott and Evelyn (Gruchow) Curttright. Jerry had a younger brother, Donald, who predeceased him in 1967. Their early years were spent helping on the family farm in Iowa. Later, their family moved to Worthington, Minnesota and then to Tacoma, Washington where Jerry graduated from Lincoln High School in 1946. He served in the Army Reserve from 1956 to 1959.
Jerry began his dedicated career with Safeway Stores in 1943. His first job was as a courtesy clerk in Tacoma. At the time of his retirement in 1988, Jerry was a Vice President and Seattle Division Manager. He was valued and respected for his professional, visionary leadership. His work sent him not only to the Seattle area, but also to Anchorage (where he managed a store through the challenges of the 1964 earthquake), Spokane, and Dallas. Jerry made many lifelong friends through his work and also met his future bride at Safeway.
On June 8, 1956 Jerry married Dorothy Byler in Seattle. Dorothy and her four children were grateful to have such a steadying influence in their family. In 1958, daughter Shelley was born. Jerry and Dorothy moved to Arizona in 1994. They shared 41 wonderful years together until her passing in 1997.
Belva Studley became Jerry’s wife on August 10, 2001 and he welcomed her children and their families into his own. Over the course of their 20 years together, Belva and Jerry shared many special times.
Jerry was always striving to improve himself. He completed a rigorous business correspondence course while working full-time and helping to raise a family. Jerry took flying lessons and learned to pilot single-engine airplanes. He taught himself to play the organ and especially enjoyed sharing time at the keyboard with his great-granddaughter Eva. Jerry was an avid reader and always had multiple books waiting to be opened. Every day started with at least one puzzle in the newspaper done over morning coffee. At 93, he still completed his physical therapy exercises regularly.
In addition, Jerry enjoyed golfing regularly with family and friends. He took great pleasure in boating throughout Puget Sound on his cabin cruiser. Cherished friendships developed in his PebbleCreek retirement community in Arizona. There were always events to enjoy with fellow retirees: card games, dominoes, concerts, dinner parties, bus tours, and more. Travel was also an important part of Jerry’s life. He took numerous cruises and trips to North and South America as well as Europe, Asia, and Australia.
He was preceded in death by his parents, brother, wife Dorothy, and children Bonnie Harris, Sunnie Maynard, and Mert Curttright.
Jerry is survived by his wife Belva, daughter Shelley Dziedzic (John), son John Curttright (Pam), grandchildren Jane Harris (Leslie), Doug Curttright, and Jennifer Curttright, and great-granddaughter Eva Sauer. He will also be missed by his stepchildren Mark Studley (Pam) and Marcia Studley Ianacone and their children and grandchildren.
Jerry touched many lives with his quiet, gentle way. He will be remembered by all as a true gentleman: generous, kind, dignified, and devoted. His absence leaves a huge hole in our hearts.
A family gathering to honor his life will be held at a later date.