March 20, 1964 - November 4, 2017
Born in Salem, Oregon, Jerry lived his early years on a small farm in Turner with his parents, Gerald Herman Zemp and Suzanne (Carpenter) Zemp, and older sisters, Barbara and Dianne, who adored their baby brother. His father, Gerald, remarried when Jerry was 8 yrs. old, to Ginger Craver and soon he had two younger baby sisters – Denise and Charlene, who also adored their older brother who played
Jerry met the love of his life, Rose Barber, while they were teenagers. They married July 19, 1986. He was a proud dad of three beautiful children: Gary, Kelsey and Kyle. His three grandsons, whom he cherished, are: Cory, Jordan and Braden. He loved them all.
Jerry was so proud of their marriage of 31 years together, but he was just as proud being married the first year, as he was their second year and the third year…until Jerry proposed to his lovely wife and companion again, in 2011. He requested her hand in marriage a second time complete with another wedding and everything. Jerry and Rose were inseparable throughout their marriage and best friends to each
Jerry loved to go with his family and his older sister’s and families to camp, white water rafting, floating and rock hounding all over Oregon countless times throughout the years. It was the greatest of times being out in the wilderness vacationing together. He was a fun, happy go lucky guy who could make anyone smile- family, friend or stranger, because Jerry made you feel welcome with his big joyous smile and caring personality. Jerry loved a bargain and shopping at garage sales to thrift stores and then resold many of his treasures for profit. Jerry especially enjoyed his Christian music “live” by going to the Rock ’N’ Road Worship Tour every March around his birthday. But his all-time favorite vacation was flying to Hawaii with Rose and Rose’s family. They had a blast snorkeling, snorkeling and more snorkeling during that dream come true vacation.
After graduating as a Certified Nursing Assistant, Jerry worked in the health care industry for over 25 years. Not only was he a caregiver professionally, but a care-giver by heart. Many times when someone in his or Roses family was ill Jerry was the first one to be there to be at their side. It did not matter if it was family or friend, Jerry would offer a helping hand to someone in need.
The Vineyard Church, in NW Salem, was where Jerry became a bondservant to Jesus by taking on many duties there and in the community. He was the first to arrive and last to leave the building. Every Thanksgiving, Jerry, orchestrated the successful, annual Homeless and Low Income Family Dinner, with Jerry collecting the gifts, door prizes, coats & clothing donated months earlier from business owners in the community. Ten years ago, Jerry was proudly baptized in Triangle Lake, as church members and his entire family observed.
Jerry met Harold Moore at Vineyard and they became fast friends. Along with other church members they regularly went into the Salem homeless community where they passed out hot coffee, sandwich’s, gloves and a blankets to the people who lived in camps. Harold was a big part of Jerry’s walk with God and learning to be a servant of Jesus. Jerry’s growing love for his Lord Jesus got deeper and deeper every year.
Jerry continued what he learned a month ago with a homeless elderly man on the street by sharing a prayer, a warm coat and blanket, a sandwich, and a beloved warm cup of sweet coffee. He was a good and faithful servant and will be dearly missed by all who knew him.