Cover photo for William Gerald "Jerry" Jackson's Obituary
William Gerald "Jerry" Jackson Profile Photo
1952 Jerry 2023

William Gerald "Jerry" Jackson

August 14, 1952 — December 22, 2023

William Gerald "Jerry" Jackson, a beacon of resilience and love, passed away suddenly and unexpectedly on December 22, 2023 in Los Angeles, CA at the age of 71.  Born August 14, 1952 in Jacksonville, FL, Jerry's early life was marked by hardship, spending much time in children’s homes and the foster care system.  Despite this challenging upbringing, Jerry possessed an unwavering spirit, a thirst for knowledge, a love of music, and devotion to those he loved.

Jerry graduated from Sebring High School in Sebring, FL. He went on to attend South Florida Junior College and University of South Florida in Tampa, FL, graduating with a degree in finance and accounting. Jerry took great pride in being a first-generation college student, defying the expectations of those who initially dismissed his educational pursuits.  He started working as a bond underwriter for Fireman’s Fund, but quickly realized the business world was not for him.  Knowing that he enjoyed working with his hands (ie, building model ships and doing macrame) and wanting to be of help to others through work in the health field Jerry went back to the University of South Florida and obtained a bachelor’s degree in biology.  He then attended Dental School at the University of Florida in Gainesville, FL, graduating 2nd in his class.

While at the University of South Florida, Jerry met the love of his life Dianne Kikta, whom he married in 1976.  They moved to Philadelphia in 1983, and in 1984 settled in their forever home in Strafford, PA with their then 5-month-old daughter, Kate Jackson.  Their son, Curtis Jackson, was born in 1987, completing the family. 

Jerry was a hard worker, holding down part-time jobs in high school and working full-time while in college. Jerry started and grew his dental practice in Devon, PA, where he was viewed as a caring and gentle dentist by his patients.  Jerry retired from dentistry in 2015. 

Despite a rigorous and demanding career, Jerry remained first and foremost devoted to his family. Whether it was the carpool pick-up line, sports events, or piano lessons, Jerry was a present and engaged dad who made Kate and Curt feel like the luckiest kids in the world. He was a true life partner to Dianne - taking on the ups and downs of life together. Jerry loved living and working in Philadelphia’s “Main Line” suburb as well as learning about its rich history; he proudly presented daughter Kate as a debutante at the 2002 Philadelphia Charity Ball. 

Jerry’s passion for music started at a young age.  He learned to play the violin in junior high school and joined the school orchestra. In high school, he took up the tuba and string bass, proudly a member of the Sebring High School marching band and orchestra, and elected as Band Captain his senior year. As an adult, he cherished his season tickets to the Philadelphia Orchestra.

In his retirement, Jerry enjoyed lunching with friends, reading history books, listening to classical music, and spending quality time with grandpups Dexter and JB. Jerry maintained a love for the Devon Horse Show, attending annually with family. 

Jerry found great pleasure in helping others, often doing so anonymously.  He was passionate about assisting individuals, especially those who had experienced misfortune, achieve an education and excel in life.  He was always willing to lend an ear to those who needed to talk, and sought to learn new information or viewpoints from his patients and others he encountered in life.  He loved to entertain and bring cheer to anyone he met. His ability and enjoyment of spinning lengthy detailed stories was only topped by his tenacious sense of humor. He never took life too seriously, with a wry remark or dad joke for any occasion. 

Jerry was predeceased by his father, Clarence "Jiggs" Jackson, brother Orville Raeford "Bucky" Jackson, sister Patricia Hoch, and father-in-law Stephen E. Kikta, Sr. Jerry is survived by his devoted wife, Dianne Kikta, and his loving children: Kate Jackson and husband Daniel Sislo, and Curtis Jackson and husband Drew Nixon. He also leaves behind siblings Owen Jackson and Janice Villarrubia, and mother-in-law Hilda Kikta, as well as numerous brothers- and sisters-in-law, nieces, nephews, and countless friends.

A Celebration of Life will be held in honor of Jerry Jackson on Saturday, June 1st, 2024, at 11:00 am at St. Mary's Episcopal Church located at 104 Louella Avenue in Wayne, PA. A luncheon will follow the service in the parish house for all who knew Jerry.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Foster Love (https://www.fosterlove.com/) or World Central Kitchen (https://wck.org/).
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of William Gerald "Jerry" Jackson, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Upcoming Services

Celebration of Life

Saturday, June 1, 2024

11:00am - 12:00 pm (Eastern time)

St Mary's Episcopal Church

104 Louella Avenue, Wayne, PA 19087

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