Gerald "Jerry" T. Sommavilla
GERALD THOMAS SOMMAVILLA OCTOBER 17, 1941 - OCTOBER 8, 1921 Gerald Sommavilla, 79, went home to be with the Lord on October 8, 2021 after a long courageous battle with renal and heart disease. He was born on October 17, 1941, in Morgantown, West Virginia, the son of John and Mary Sommavilla.
Affectionately known by family and friends as Sonny, he grew up in Brookhaven, WV. He was an avid baseball player in his youth. During the Vietnam War, he served in the US Army in Thailand, where he was a Machinist who made the parts to fix anything that needed repair, including weapons and Jeeps. After he was honorably discharged, he continued his career as a Machinist in the Detroit Area, and later moved with his wife and children to the Upper Peninsula in 1976. Jerry could fix almost anything, and even built his own wood-splitter from scratch, using the motor from a Sears lawnmower. A true woodsman, he loved to hunt and fish and explore the woods, and few people knew as much about trees and woodland animals as he did. When he couldn't be outdoors, he enjoyed reading Louis L'amour novels, watching John Wayne westerns, and winning gin rummy. He valued his privacy, but by all who knew him, he was very loved and respected.
He had a very special relationship with his cousins in the North where he spent time with them fishing on their Island, and he was adored by his grandnephew Andrew, one of the only ones who had the privilege of being able to extract from him some of his life stories.
He is survived by his wife, Sharon; daughter Sheila, of Atlanta, Georgia; son David (Tricia) of Armada Michigan; grandson Micheal, of Lynn, Michigan; great granddaughters Ella and Carlee; two sisters, Carol and Helen; nieces Cheryl and Tracy; brother-in-law Ray (Jo) Wuolle; sister-in-law Diane (Mike) Surma; niece Deanna (Wayne) Johnson; and grandniece and grandnephew Anna and Andrew; sister-in-law Judy; niece Erin Adkins (Bruce); grandnieces Ava and Claire; grandnephew Jack; niece Jaci Sommavilla and nephew Joe Sommavilla; all the Cordell cousins; and many other nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents, two brothers, and five sisters.
The family would like to thank the many wonderful doctors and nurses of OSF St. Francis Hospital, Escanaba, and Upper Peninsula Health Services of Marquette and Escanaba, and Fresenius Medical Care for their competent and caring attention to Jerry over the years.
In lieu of flowers, donations to Samaritan's Purse would be appreciated.
Graveside Service and Burial was held on October 12, 2021, at Spalding Township Cemetery.