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Gerald “Jerry” Fishman of Watertown, passed away on March 7, 2019 at the age of 89. He was born on May 26, 1929, the youngest of Abe and Anna Fishman’s 4 children. He enjoyed being raised on the north side of Minneapolis in the predominantly Jewish area of town.
Jerry married Georgia Lewis in St. Paul, Minnesota on August 21, 1955. The couple celebrated 60 years of marriage in August of 2015. Georgia passed away in February of 2016.
Shortly after their marriage, they moved to Watertown and he started Watertown Iron and Metal Company with his brother Herman. He was respected and admired by many customers and friends as an astute businessman. He loved joking with his customers. Jerry was also very generous with donations of steel for various community projects. In fact, much of the steel in Bramble Park Zoo was donated by him. He worked hard in the business, eventually retiring and selling the business in 1998.
One of his favorite hobbies was grilling. He made the best chickens, turkeys and especially ribs that he would share with friends....a true grill master!!
Jerry enjoyed his life in Watertown and gave back to the community in many ways. He was a 50 year member of the Shrine and was involved in the annual circus, being chairman of novelty sales for many years. He was also a member of the St. Ann’s Hospital Board of Directors, as well as a volunteer for Kapers, Town Players and other local entities.
Jerry loved all animals, but was especially fond of dogs. He owned dogs all of his life until he entered the nursing home. Many will remember seeing him walk in a stretched position as the dog in front was eager to walk and the dog in back preferred to stay home.
But his first love was his family. He was very proud of his 6 children, 11 grandchildren and 3 great-grandchildren. Jerry and Georgia were very involved in their children’s activities and successes. Later in life they continued attending almost all of the grandchildren’s events here in Watertown. They were admired and adored for their love of family and were considered a second set of parents by many.
The Fishman family would like to recognize Dr. Wilde, Dr. Shives and the Watertown medical community for their care. Also, a very special thank you to the staff of Jenkins Living Center, where he made his home the last 1 ½ years of his life.
Jerry is survived by his son, Brad (Karen) Fishman of Watertown, SD, four daughters: Amy (Larry) Greenfeld of Scottsdale, AZ, Stacy (DeLaine) Russell of Fairfax Station, VA, Emily (Michael) Novick of Las Vegas, NV and Jody Ortega of Chandler, AZ; 11 grandchildren: Jacly, Brenna, Ellie, Michelle, Ally, Sarah, Aaron, Miriam, Hannah, Shayna and Tavi; and 3 great-grandchildren: Mason, Alana and Matilda... and another little gal due in May.
He was preceded in death by his parents, 2 sisters, 1 brother, his wife, Georgia and his daughter Nancy.
Burial was done on March 12, 2019, at Green Acres Cemetery in Scottsdale, AZ.
A Memorial visitation will be held on Thursday, March 28 from 5-8 p.m. at the Crawford-Osthus Funeral Chapel in Watertown.
Memorials may be directed to Jenkins Living Center, 215 South Maple Street, Watertown, SD, 57201 or to the Bramble Park Zoo, 800 10th St NW, Watertown, SD, 57201.