Gerald Donald “Jerry” Rockman, 83, Stevens Point, died Saturday, June 15, 2013, while under the care of Hospice at Oakridge Assisted Living Center.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, June 22, at St. Stephen Catholic Church in Stevens Point, with the Rev. Jerzy Rebacz officiating. A private burial will be held in July at the Rockman Family Reunion.
Visitation will be at the Shuda Funeral Chapel from 4 to 8 p.m. Friday. There will be no visitation prior to the service on Saturday.
A memorial will be established at a later date.
Condolences may be offered online at www.shudafuneral.com.
Mr. Rockman was born June 13, 1930, in Mosinee, a son of the late Donald and Lillian (Kessler) Rockman. He attended Mosinee Grade School, Boulevard School and Mosinee High School, graduating in 1948.
Following graduation, he joined the United States Army and completed boot camp in Fort Devens, Mass. He served in the 1st Cavalry, Division 99, Field Artillery, “C” Battery and was deployed to Korea from 1950-51. He earned the rank of sergeant and was honorably discharged on Sept. 12, 1951, receiving the Purple Heart for injuries suffered during the war.
He was married to Joyce Ann Gnirk in Pine City, Minn., on Aug. 27, 1951. She died on April 9, 1954.
He was married to Verona “Mona” Daublender on June 18, 1955, at St. Theresa Church in Rothschild. She died on Dec. 20, 2002.
After military service, he worked for Marathon Corp in Rothschild, Wausau Paper Mill in Brokaw and finished his working career at Worzalla Publishing Co. in Stevens Point, retiring in 1993.
On Feb. 28, 1991, then-Stevens Point Mayor W. Scott Schultz declared the week of March 1-7 “Jerry Rockman Week” for his “contribution of untold hours of service to the city’s youth over the last 25 years.”
Mr. Rockman was an active participant in Stevens Point Youth Baseball (SPYBA) program for 18 years, serving as coach (18 years), umpire (four years), board member (five years), league supervisor (two years), and umpire coordinator (one year).
He also pioneered girls softball by starting the Stevens Point Area Youth Girls Softball Association, serving as coach (five years), board member (five years) and league director (one year). He assisted in establishing the Pacelli girls’ softball program and served three years as their varsity and pitching coach.
He was involved in all aspects of the Boy Scouts of America for many years while his sons were growing up. He attended Tesomas Scout Camp in Rhinelander as a boy and attended with his sons. He started the Cub Scout program at McKinley School and continued at St. Joseph and St. Stephen as Cubmaster and later Scoutmaster.
As a Jaycee member, he was part of the team that renumbered all the houses in Stevens Point. He was also a member of the Knights of Columbus and the American Legion.
In 1975, he started the Rockman Family Reunion in Mosinee that is now in its 38th year of the reunion and there have been five living generations during that time. He researched the genealogy of the Rockman family, going back at least another 10 generations to the late 1600s and early 1700s. Other families included in the genealogy are Isaacson, Mosling, Kessler, Gnirk and Daublender.
Survivors include six daughters, Debra Jo, Jean (Mark Brillowski), Kay (Dean Lamb), Lynn (Phil DiSalvo), Lori (Garret Glodowski) and Sandy (Brian Sackmann); five sons, Lawrence (Mary Lou), Scott (Lauri), Alan (Mary), Randy and Jim (Vicky); 27 grandchildren and 17 great-grandchildren.
He was also preceded in death by two granddaughters.