Gerald “Jerry” Delmar Allen, age 76, passed on to his heavenly home at the Seasons Hospice in Rochester, MN on Saturday, September 2, 2023 surrounded by family. Jerry struggled with Parkinson’s Lewy Body disease for the last several years. He fought a valiant battle with this devastating illness that slowly robbed him of everything he enjoyed in life. Jerry was loved by all he knew and will be terribly missed, but he is now free of his earthly burdens and is dancing in heaven!
Jerry was born on May 18, 1947 in Rochester, Minnesota, and was the third of four children born to Louis and Edith (Kranz) Allen of Eyota. He was raised on his parents’ farm outside of Eyota, and attended Eyota public school, graduating from high school in 1965. He worked at Mayo Clinic for a brief time and attended college classes at Rochester Junior College. He studied engineering before becoming employed with IBM and continued his engineering studies while working there. Jerry was employed at IBM as a computer programmer and software engineer as well as writing technical documentation. He played a part in the development of the AS400 computer system and experienced the huge changes in computer technology over the 46 years he worked at IBM. His time at IBM was an important part of his life. In 2004 he retired from IBM then worked supplemental at IBM for several years. He made many wonderful and enduring friendships during his time at IBM and was very proud of his work there.
Jerry married Maureen Halloran (Barry) of Chatfield in 1967, and they had 2 sons, Jeff Allen and Jody Allen. Jerry and Maureen were later divorced. In 1979 Jerry married Linda Patterson of Rochester and they were later divorced.
Jerry was introduced to Marcy (Onsgard-Meyer) Allen in 1991 with the help of Marcy’s brother Gary Meyer at an IBM summer volleyball game. Jerry and Marcy were happily together for 32 years. They married on December 26, 1999 and enjoyed 23 years of marriage together.
Prior to his illness Jerry was very active and enjoyed many things including biking, cross country skiing, snowshoeing, hiking, gardening, woodworking, photography, traveling and driving. Jerry was a master craftsman and enjoyed making things including stained glass creations but particularly enjoyed woodworking and carpentry. In 1986 Jerry bought a home on a bare 3-acre plot of land in NW Rochester. Jerry had a vision for this property and with the help of his 2 sons they planted many “DNR” trees and over the years turned it into a beautifully landscaped and wooded property. He created his dream woodworking shop on their property in Rochester, and his goal was to ultimately have a woodworking business after he retired from IBM in 2004. He was able to achieve this for a few years, but eventually his illness took this dream from him. Jerry and Marcy lived on their property until 2016 when they made the difficult decision to sell their place and build a handicapped accessible home with less maintenance in Zumbrota.
Jerry had a quick wit and a great sense of humor, was a master at puns, and was talented, creative and a problem solver who loved to work on many varying projects on his home, property and machinery including cars. He greatly enjoyed “Garage Logic” with Joe Soucheray for 30 years, and listened to it daily for “common sense” talk and good laughs. He loved his engines and power equipment and had an impressive “cylinder index” for many years and was a “car guy.” Jerry particularly loved Corvettes and owned several over the years. His latest and last Corvette was a beautiful silver 2007 Coupe with the personalized license plate “NVRL8.” Jerry and Marcy were members of the Rochester Area Corvette Enthusiasts (RACE) club for over 15 years, and they participated in many wonderful drives and trips around the United States in their Corvette, and made many good friends and great memories. He unfortunately had to give up driving in 2018- one of the sad losses for Jerry due to Parkinsons.
Jerry loved spending time with his family and adored his grandchildren. He and Marcy took as many trips as possible to Colorado over the years to spend time with their family there. Jerry was also a devoted son to his parents and helped them as they aged and enjoyed spending time with his siblings, parents, nephews, nieces and cousins at family events. His nephews and nieces lovingly called Jerry “Uncle Spunky” because of his humor and spunky personality.
Jerry is survived by his wife Marcy Allen of Zumbrota, his sons Jody (Elizabeth) Allen of Erie, Colorado and grandchildren Eden, Kaitlyn, Nick and Hazel also of Erie, Colorado, and son Jeff Allen of Rochester, MN.; stepsons Chad (Julie) Onsgard and granddaughter Chloe Onsgard of Rosemount, MN., and Jesse Onsgard of Minneapolis, MN. He is also survived by his siblings Joan (Odell) Ruesink of Zumbrota, MN; Gene (Joan) Allen of Eyota, MN; and Joyce Vanderham of Platte, South Dakota; brother-in-law Roger Meyer (Mary) of Wayzata, sister-in-law Shelly Meyer of Dodge Center, and sister-in-law Devonna Meyer of Wabasha. He was preceded in death by his parents Edith and Louis Allen, a nephew Rodney Ruesink (Joan and Odell Ruesink), a brother-in-law Jerry Vanderham (Joyce Vanderham) of Platte, South Dakota, and brother-in-law Gary Meyer (Devonna Meyer).
A celebration of life service will be held for Jerry on September 15 at 1:00 at Our Saviors Lutheran Church in Zumbrota, with visitation 2 hours prior at the church. The service will be livestreamed and can be found on the church's website at https://www.oslczumbrota.org/watch/. Memorials may go to The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research or the Seasons Hospice House in Rochester. Arrangements made by Mahn Family Funeral Home, Larson Chapel.