Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas

Last Christmas we gathered together to celebrate with Jerry. This year, Jerry and Rita are watching over us. The party upstairs is getting popular.

Jerry surrounded by his grandchildren

Sherlock Christmas

Jerry surrounded by his kids

Sherlock Christmas

Merry Christmas!

Sunday, December 16, 2012

World War II - B17 Survival Story

WWII - B17 Survival Story

Navigator - Harry C. Nuessle
Bombardier - Ralph Burbridge
Engineer - Joe C. James
Radio Operator - Paul A. Galloway
Ball Turret Gunner - Elton Conda
Waist Gunner - Michael Zuk
Tail Gunner - Sam T. Sarpolus
Ground Crew Chief - Hank Hyland 
B-17 in 1943

A mid-air collision on February 1, 1943, between a B-17 and a German fighter over the Tunis dock area, became the subject of one of the most famous photographs of World War II. An enemy fighter attacking a 97th Bomb Group formation went out of control, probably with a wounded pilot then continued its crashing descent into the rear of the fuselage of a Fortress named "All American", piloted by Lt. Kendrick R. Bragg, of the 414th Bomb Squadron. When it struck, the fighter broke apart, but left some pieces in the B-17. The left horizontal stabilizer of the Fortress and left elevator were completely torn away. The two right engines were out and one on the left had a serious oil pump leak. The vertical fin and the rudder had been damaged, the fuselage had been cut almost completely through connected only at two small parts of the frame and the radios, electrical and oxygen systems were damaged. There was also a hole in the top that was over 16 feet long and 4 feet wide at its widest and the split in the fuselage went all the way to the top gunners turret.
Although the tail actually bounced and swayed in the wind and twisted when the plane turned and all the control cables were severed, except one single elevator cable still worked, and the aircraft still flew - miraculously! The tail gunner was trapped because there was no floor connecting the tail to the rest of the plane. The waist and tail gunners used parts of the German fighter and their own parachute harnesses in an attempt to keep the tail from ripping off and the two sides of the fuselage from splitting apart. While the crew was trying to keep the bomber from coming apart, the pilot continued on his bomb run and released his bombs over the target.

When the bomb bay doors were opened, the wind turbulence was so great that it blew one of the waist gunners into the broken tail section. It took several minutes and four crew members to pass him ropes from parachutes and haul him back into the forward part of the plane. When they tried to do the same for the tail gunner, the tail began flapping so hard that it began to break off. The weight of the gunner was adding some stability to the tail section, so he went back to his position.

The turn back toward England had to be very slow to keep the tail from twisting off. They actually covered almost 70 miles to make the turn home. The bomber was so badly damaged that it was losing altitude and speed and was soon alone in the sky. For a brief time, two more Me-109 German fighters attacked the All American. Despite the extensive damage, all of the machine gunners were able to respond to these attacks and soon drove off the fighters. The two waist gunners stood up with their heads sticking out through the hole in the top of the fuselage to aim and fire their machine guns. The tail gunner had to shoot in short bursts because the recoil was actually causing the plane to turn.

Allied P-51 fighters intercepted the All American as it crossed over the Channel and took one of the pictures shown. They also radioed to the base describing that the empennage was waving like a fish tail and that the plane would not make it and to send out boats to rescue the crew when they bailed out. The fighters stayed with the Fortress taking hand signals from Lt. Bragg and relaying them to the base. Lt. Bragg signaled that 5 parachutes and the spare had been "used" so five of the crew could not bail out. He made the decision that if they could not bail out safely, then he would stay with the plane and land it.

Two and a half hours after being hit, the aircraft made its final turn to line up with the runway while it was still over 40 miles away. It descended into an emergency landing and a normal roll-out on its landing gear.

When the ambulance pulled alongside, it was waved off because not a single member of the crew had been injured. No one could believe that the aircraft could still fly in such a condition. The Fortress sat placidly until the crew all exited through the door in the fuselage and the tail gunner had climbed down a ladder, at which time the entire rear section of the aircraft collapsed onto the ground. The rugged old bird had done its job.
 Great war story!

Thanks to my Aunt Vivian for sending this along.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Wreaths Across America Day December 15 To Honor Veterans At National Iwo Jima Monument

All are welcome to attend the first annual Wreaths Across America Day ceremony to be held at the National Iwo Jima Monument on Saturday December 15, 2012 starting at 12 noon.

Seven ceremonial wreaths will be placed to remember all soldiers, sailors, airmen, and marines who served, honor their sacrifices, and teach our younger generations about the high cost of our freedoms. The monument is...located on the Newington/New Britain town line on Ella Grasso Boulevard at the corner of Barbour Road.

Specially designated wreaths for the Army, Marines, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, Merchant Marine, and POW/MIA will be placed on memorials during...a ceremony that will be coordinated simultaneously at over 750 participating locations all across the Country, including Arlington National Cemetery.

The Worcester Wreath Company from Harrington, Maine donates the wreaths to be placed on the headstones of our Nation’s fallen heroes. Recognition of the service and sacrifice of our veterans, and their families, is especially poignant during the traditional holiday season. In 2012 it is projected that over 400,000 wreaths will be placed nationwide, by over 150,000 volunteers as part of the Wreaths Across America mission to Remember, Honor, and Teach. Remember the fallen, Honor those who serve including their families who sacrifice, and Teach our children the cost of the freedoms we enjoy each day.

Wreaths Across America's website can be found by visiting www.wreathsacrossamerica.org

Gary Roy, President
Iwo Jima Memorial Historical Foundation

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Sherlock Thanksgiving 2012

Mom and Dad were watching over us as we continued the tradition of gathering on the Friday after Thanksgiving. Over the years, as each of the siblings got married, the question of where to go for the holidays came up. We decided to go to the other side on the day and to have the Sherlock's gather on the Friday after for Thanksgiving and some convenient day after Christmas.

Not the best quality photo but it does show some fun was being shared!

Around the table from left to right: Avery, Keegan, Celia, Allison, Carolyn, Joan (just the tip of her head shows), Brianna (has more showing with half her face appearing), John, and Oliver who apparently is getting pushed into the center!

Using Google Hangout Franklin connected with other members in NJ and IL. This may be a new addition to the evolving tradition!

Celia continued one other prime tradition by making cheesecake using Dad's recipe. Dad's recipe it turns out was the one Mom used but really originated with Lillian Canton. So the more correct term should be Lillian's Recipe. In any case, Ceclia did a great job. Dad (Papa) would have had a couple of pieces for sure!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Joyal Brouillard Brunch

Albert wrote "the few, the proud, the family" as he sent out this photo from the Joyal Brouillard Brunch which was held this past Sunday at The Pines in North Smithfield.

If your ears were burning, maybe it was because the discussion mentioned you somewhere along its winding path!

Friday, November 9, 2012

237th Birthday of the Marine Corps

Tonight at West Valley Inn in West Warwick distinguished members of the UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS will gather to celebrate.  The occasion is the 237th Birthday of the MARINE CORPS.

This year it is one day early due to scheduling conflicts.  Several members of the Providence Police Department who I work with have organized it for several years.

Ed Malloy, Steve Cileli and Carl Weston along with several others have been working feverishly to bring a great format of events.

I met for breakfast and of course they are a little off as their good friend Jerry Sherlock is not with them tonight.  He has reported for duty on the streets of Heaven where all MARINES return.

Ed was very somber when he sent out the invitations in August.   Steve Cileli was excited about all the additional food that would be put out this year.  He chuckled fondly about Jerry always circling for crackers and cheese and of course holding out for dessert.   Carl Weston spoke of how much humor Jerry brought to the table.  If thats true Jerry was the ringmaster of that cast of characters.

Ed slipped me the sheet for the Roll of Honor that will be called tonight.  That list is read of the MARINES who have travelled on to the final journey.

It is a little quiet around here tonight.  Jerry would make this the first stop on the way to the Dinner posing for pictures.  Steve Cileli or I would drive him to the Dinner.

Of course the Corps marches on in History.

Ed Malloy tells me a photo of Jerry will be present at the head table.   He is not forgotten and sorely missed by his fellow MARINES.


Monday, November 5, 2012

Odds in our favor

The Mass Saturday evening at St Michael's was a simple ceremony with a full church. After the homily, the names of the deceased were read in the order by month that they passed. A member of the family brought up the candle, had it lit, and then placed it on a table to the side on the altar. There was quite a collection when all was done.

The full listing of names:

Dolores and I took Mr and Mrs Proulx with us to the Mass. We stopped at Chelo's on RT 44 for dinner after. What would the odds be for us to be seated at the same booth where I last sat with Dad?

Friday, November 2, 2012

HONOR FLIGHT from Rhode Island

Tomorrow morning several veterans will be departing TF Green Airport for Washington, DC via HONOR FLIGHT.

Several friends of Jerry donated in his memory to HONOR FLIGHT.

It is fitting that members of the Providence Police Pipes and Drums will be playing several Tunes for these veterans.  Several of Jerry's friends and fellow MARINES will be playing.  Pipe Major Manny Soares and Lead  Tip Drum. Carl Weston will be present.  

The Veterans will be honored with the Minstrel Boy and the Military Set.  Army, Navy Air force and MARINE CORPS HYMN.  

Jerry was able to see the Pipes and Drums play at the half time show last year at Providence College Basketball season opener.  

The march out was MARINE CORPS HYMN.  As usual Jerry shot to attention upon hearing that.  As did every other MARINE in the house,

By Tradition MARINES drop what they are doing and come to attention upon hearing the USMC Hymn.

I am out of town or would otherwise be there.

I thank the organizers of HONOR FLIGHT.

My fellow members of the PPD Pipes and Drums.

Above all the veterans who will be going to Washington.  Of course the Service members KIA, MIA and those who have made the final journey home.

"The minstrel boy to the war is gone,
In the ranks of death ye may find him;
His father's sword he hath girded on,
With his wild harp slung along behind him;
Land of Song, the lays of the warrior bard,
May some day sound for thee,
But his harp belongs to the brave and free
And shall never sound in slavery!"

Lyrics from the MINSTREL BOY

Friday, October 26, 2012

Andy's Story


I love getting the updates on "Jerry's Story".

One of my favorite times with your Dad is one of my favorite stories to tell. My brothers Richard and Ray and I took your Dad to see the movie "Letters from Iwo Jima". We felt so honored to be sitting with a survivor of that famous battle, especially since our dad Del also fought there.

When the movie was over, we all commented on how "realistic" it was.

Jerry very soft spokenly said it brought back a lot of memories and that the makers of the film had done a great job recreating the scenes of Iwo Jima. As far as realistic, Jerry said it wasn't very realistic. The only way to recreate the realism of the day would be to have live ammunition fire flying by you from all sides and know that at any moment you could be dead!!!

He said this with such calm and authority that it has stayed with me every since. Only those who have lived through combat can really know the "realistic" fears and feelings that come with it.

Hope all is well with you and your family.

I miss your Dad and feel blessed that I got to know him the last few years of his life.


Andy Brouillard


Thank you for sharing this. And thank you for taking Dad to the movie. I know he talked of it frequently.


Thursday, October 25, 2012

"make up for his lack of accuracy"

Jerry's son Bob recalls a conversation with him from Sep 2007. Jerry had recounted some of his Marine training in the conversation.

He is in good spirits, and told me some things about being in the Marines that I never knew - that he graduated from boot camp without having passed his marksmanship test on the M-1 Garand rifle that was the basic weapon for Marine infantrymen in WWII. He later qualified on it, on the 30 caliber machine gun, and also qualified on the carbine (a shorter weapon better suited for scouts and radiomen to carry. Papa liked it because it had a 15 round cartridge vs. the 8 rounds in the M-1, and he figured it would make up for his lack of accuracy. He also qualified on the 45 caliber pistol, because he did some assignments as a courier - bringing a briefcase of important papers from the officers on one island over to their counterparts on another island. The briefcase would be handcuffed to his left hand, and he had to be able to shoot the 45 if anyone messed with him.

Thanks for sharing this Bob.

If you have a memory or story of Jerry to share, please send it along.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Memorial Mass - Nov 3, 2012

St Michael's Church in Georgiaville, RI will be holding a memorial mass on Saturday, Nov 3, 2012 at 5:00 PM. This mass will remember all the parishioners who passed away this year. This was Jerry's most recent parish and where the funeral mass was held in February.

If you are in or around the area and want to join us at the mass, please let me know.

From the notification on the mass:
"Catholic tradition sets aside the month of November as a time to remember our loved ones who have died. During the 5:00 PM Mass on Saturday, November 3, there will be a simple ceremony to remember our parishioners who have died since last November. As a family who has suffered the loss of a loved one, I invite you to participate in this mass. 
After the homily, the names of those who have died since last November will be read. As each name is spoken, we invite you or a family member to come forward to place a candle next to the altar. After mass, you may take the candle home with you. If you do not wish to participate in the candle ceremony, you are still welcome to come to the mass. 
A candle with Gerald Sherlock's name on it will be available on a table at the front entrance to the Church. Please take the candle before mass begins so you have it with you when the names are read. You may sit wherever you wish, as there will be no reserved seating."

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Honor Flight

Honor Flight is still performing its mission. You can help other WWII veterans visit their war memorial in Washington, DC.

Why WWII veterans?
We are loosing over 1,000 a day. Time is short. More recent veterans will have their time to come but the WWII vets need to be addressed now

A virtual honor flight is being held today, more info can be found here

Monday, September 3, 2012

Happy birthday, Jerry

It would have been Jerry's birthday today. Likely something of a gathering of families to celebrate.

He is missed but not forgotten!

Sunday, September 2, 2012

The power of music!

A wonderful story from a WWII veteran

On September 4th, the same day Mr. Garnett's fellow veterans will fly to Washington, DC on an Honor Flight, a group of volunteers will bring a Virtual Honor Flight to his house. Veterans United Home Loans in partnership with Central Missouri Honor Flight will offer the first-ever "Virtual Honor Flight" via Google Plus Hangouts.  Using this group video chat room and live streaming technology on You Tube, Mr. Garnett and other aging veterans will get to see their memorial and experience the magic of an Honor Flight from the comfort of their own homes, even if they're too sick to fly.

More info on the virtual honor flight to be held on Tuesday, Sep 4th can be found here

Regular readers will recall that for Jerry's funeral donations to Honor Flight were requested. It is good to see their work still going on! And that thanks to folks like Sarah Hill a virtual honor flight can happen through the wonders of the technology available today.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Another tribute for Jerry

When I returned home from vacation recently, I had a stack of mail to go through and found a large envelop from the Veterans Administration. It contained the following letter on heavy parchment paper.

Thank you!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

4th Annual VJ Day Candlelight Ceremony of Remembrance

4th Annual VJ Day Candlelight Ceremony of Remembrance to be held Sunday, August 12

The Iwo Jima Memorial Historical Foundation, Inc. will be holding their 4th Annual VJ Day Candlelight
Ceremony of Remembrance at the National Iwo Jima Memorial Monument on Sunday, August 12, 2012.
The public is invited to attend and participate in this ceremony by remembering a deceased loved one who
served at any time in the U. S. Armed Forces. This event is part of the National Spirit of '45 Day Campaign.

The 4th Annual VJ Day Candlelight Ceremony of Remembrance will remember and honor ALL of America's Veterans who served at any time in the Armed Forces of the United States and who have since passed away or who were KIA/MIA. Among those are the 100 Connecticut servicemen who were killed in action during the World War II Battle of Iwo Jima. The names of those men are inscribed on the black granite panels of the monument. The ceremony also remembers those who survived the battle but who have since passed away. 

The public is invited to attend this Free event and participate by remembering any special veteran in their lives who is no longer with us. The ceremony will include bagpipes, invocation, speakers, taps, rifle salute, riderless horse and the lighting of candles. The public is invited to call the name of a loved one to be remembered and toll the bell for each. Relatives or friends of the 100 men KIA who are listed on the monument or survivors of the battle who have passed away are asked to contact us.

Those wishing to attend are asked to first gather at 5:30 p.m. at the Newington Memorial Funeral Home
located at 20 Bonair Ave. in the center of Newington. There will be a brief ceremony which will include the
folding of an American flag which represents all veterans who have passed away. Everyone is invited to
bring a photo of the veteran they would like to remember and place it on the Wall of Honor.

Due to limited parking at the Monument, a bus will be provided to transport visitors to the National Iwo Jima Memorial. This bus will be part of a formal escorted procession to the National Iwo Jima Memorial where services will begin at 6:30 p.m. In case of rain, the entire ceremony will take place at the Newington Memorial Funeral Home.

The Battle of Iwo Jima was fought February 19th through March 26th, 1945. It was the bloodiest battle in
Marine history, resulting in the deaths of 6,821 American servicemen and wounded over 19,000 more. The
Iwo Jima Memorial Historical Foundation, Inc. is a non-profit 501 (c)(3) organization whose mission is to
maintain the National Iwo Jima Memorial, educate others about the history of the Battle for Iwo Jima and to
perpetuate the memory of those who fought and died there.

We are seeking Sponsors and Volunteers to help with this event. For more information, please contact Gary
at (860) 291-9666 or email SOSIwoJima@yahoo.com. You may also visit the Iwo Jima Survivors website or Facebook page at www.SOSIwoJima.com for more information and directions to the Newington Memorial Funeral Home or National Iwo Jima Memorial Monument.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Families are ...

Cousin Elaine sends this along that had been typed by her mother (Pauline) and that still hangs on her own refrigerator as a constant reminder.

Well said!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Mariette S. Bruneau, 80

Mariette S. Bruneau, 80
EAST PROVIDENCE - Mariette S. (Joyal) Bruneau, 80, formerly of 500 Mendon Road, South Attleboro, died Saturday July 14, 2012, at the Philip Hulitar Hospice Center, Providence. She was the wife of the late Rodolphe P. Bruneau to whom she was married 54 years. 
She was born in Pawtucket a daughter of the late Armand A. and Ernestine R. (Brouillard) Joyal. Mrs. Bruneau volunteered for numerous organizations throughout her lifetime and spent the last 25 years dedicated to Amos House in Providence. 
She leaves her loving family, daughters Ann M. McGahern and her husband Michael of South Attleboro, Michelle A. Brissette and her husband Joseph of Rumford, six grandchildren, four sisters and one brother. She was predeceased by two sisters and two brothers. 
Her funeral will be held on Wednesday at 9 a.m. from the Perry-McStay Funeral Home, 2555 Pawtucket Ave., East Providence, with a Mass of Christian burial at 10 a.m. in St. Francis Xavier Church, North Carpenter Street, East Providence. Burial will be in Notre Dame Cemetery, Pawtucket. 
Calling hours are on Tuesday, 5-8 p.m. 
In lieu of flowers contributions to Amos House, 415 Friendship St., PO Box 72873, Providence, RI 02907 would be appreciated.

Brouillard_Joyal_20120115 003

Mariette was Rita's sister. Shown here in a Brouillard Brunch photo with her brother Albert in January 2012.

Obituary originally published by the Attleboro Sun Chronicle

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Father's Day: a time to remember

In Dad's absence, there will be a lot of firsts.

First Easter without him. First Memorial Day. Now this, the first Father's Day.

In his absence, we have memories of the good times. Perhaps sparked by pictures. Perhaps sparked by a recollection. Perhaps sparked by a mental reminder to call, but wait, he is not here anymore.

From the archives, we have the following to help us remember.

Allison wrote this is 2010

And this from 2007, when we posted the first audio recording with Jerry

and the audio itself

Monday, May 28, 2012

The Choice Flowers of Springtime

Jerry's daughter, Joan found this photo of Jerry and scanned it to a digital photo. It is of Jerry in the Pacific carrying his M1 Carbine. The other MARINES are carrying Carbines as well.

I began the day with the Special Forces Association in Exeter at the Veterans Cemetery. One of my fellow Pipers, Sgt. Major David Morgan of The 43rd MP Brigade played Amazing Grace as a final Salute to the Fallen.

My final stop was at Rita and Jerry's grave. Another fellow worker had wanted to place a US Flag at the grave for Jerry. It was considerably warmer then the last time I was there. The Cemetery was full of folks paying respects to family members. It was truly full of the Choicest Flowers of the Springtime. We placed a second flag to the left of the head stone.

I leave you with the part of the passage from Gen. John A. Logan's order recognizing Memorial Day.
"The 30th day of May, 1868, is designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion, and whose bodies now lie in almost every city, village, and hamlet churchyard in the land. In this observance no form or ceremony is prescribed, but posts and comrades will in their own way arrange such fitting services and testimonials of respect as circumstances may permit...... 
If other eyes grow dull and other hands slack, and other hearts cold in the solemn trust, ours shall keep it well as long as the light and warmth of life remain in us. 
Let us, then, at the time appointed, gather around their sacred remains and garland the passionless mounds above them with choicest flowers of springtime; let us raise above them the dear old flag they saved from dishonor; let us in this solemn presence renew our pledges to aid and assist those whom they have left among us as sacred charges upon the Nation's gratitude,--the soldier's and sailor's widow and orphan."

Gen. John A. Logan
Grand Army of the Republic
Washington, D.C., May 5, 1868

Memorial Day - 2012

This day was honored in prior years with Jerry around. This is the first year where Jerry is not around and he is missed.

Jerry in the Leatherneck Gallery

When you see a veteran, thank them for their service.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

As Memorial Day approaches, a significant force is now missing.
 He is missed by the Saturday Lunch crew.
  He is missed by his fellow MARINES.
Above all, he is missed dearly by the Sherlock Clan.

Semper Fi Jerry.

Monday, April 30, 2012

Marker in place

The bronze military marker is now in place on Jerry and Rita's grave site.

The marker is now in place

The weather was good Sunday to take a trip and get s couple of good photos:

Marker 2

Monday, April 16, 2012

Brouillard Brunch - Westbrook Beach visit

The Brouillard Brunch was held in Westbrook, CT on Sunday. The tide was low when we stopped at the beach. Far different from the last time we visited (Nov 2011)

For reference, on the prior visit the tide was much higher

Friday, April 13, 2012

Who's watching the parade?

Who's in this picture?

Sherlock & cousins '62 parade

Steve, Bob, Mike, are easy enough to pick out. Then my guessing game starts.

Sunday, April 8, 2012


This is our first holiday without Dad. I am trying to write this with James Taylor singing "Carolina on My Mind" in the background. Tears fill my eyes and I take a break.

Why does Pandora play Kris Allen's "Live Like We're Dying" next?

This collage of photos was put together by Carolyn. Thank you!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Who's in the pool?

No, I am not talking about the pool for the current NCAA March Madness.

Some of the Joyal clans gathered at the Barrette's pool in the 1970's.

Sherlock and Barrettes '70 pool

Who is in the pool?

If you have any ideas or guesses, you can either comment or send an email to me at

Thanks to my sister Joan for making this image available. There are a bunch of photos that she has taken the time to convert to a digital format so we will be able to share this history.

Friday, March 23, 2012

He Earned It

A few years ago, I had the honor of meeting Gerald F. Sherlock, United States Marine Corps, a WWII veteran of Saipan, Tinian, and 36 days on Iwo Jima. I was a Marine reservist from 1980 to 1984, and I've always been, and will always continue to be proud of the title, United States Marine. Never, however, have I been so proud to be a Marine as I was after having met Jerry. Meeting a man who fought in some of the most momentous battles in our history was like a young baseball fan meeting Ted Williams, or a young music fan meeting Elvis. All that aside, his best quality was his humility and sense of humor. Jerry was just a regular guy.

Shortly after meeting Jerry, I saw a contest, announced in small print, in the Sgt. Grit newsletter. It was a Marine Corps trivia contest, and the first 10 people that answered the questions correctly won a small bit of sand that had been taken home from Iwo. When mine came in the mail, it was like someone handed me the Holy Grail. I made up a small triangular box, painted red, with the Eagle, Globe, and Anchor symbol on the front, to hold my prize. I cherished it.

Once I got to know Jerry Sherlock, I felt it was only right to give the sand to him, from one Marine to another. He earned it. It was his. On the night of the last episode of The Pacific on HBO, a bunch of Marines got together with Jerry and his son, and watched The Pacific in reverent silence. After dabbing some moist eyes, I gave the box with the sand to Jerry. He was so appreciative, for once he was without words.

The next year, 2010, those same Marines and I took over as the committee for our local Rhode Island Marine Corps dinner. It is an honor to have over 175 Marines from all over Rhode Island break bread with us as we celebrate the birthday of the Marine Corps.

This past November, on the day before the dinner, Jerry was diagnosed with cancer. He came to the dinner as he always has, in good spirits, despite the bad news. We were once again honored to have Jerry in our midst; but we were also graced by the presence of Pat Femino, another Iwo veteran from Rhode Island. What we found amazing was that Jerry and Pat had never met! They became fast friends. Jerry's son in law Frank often took them out to lunch and made sure they stayed in touch.

In the last few months, he fought valiantly, as he had done for our country and for the honor of our beloved Marine Corps. PFC Gerald Sherlock stormed the beaches of Iwo Jima with the 4th Marine Division on February 19th, 1945. He left this Earth on February 19th, 2012 at the age of 86, 67 years to the day from when landed on Iwo Jima. Rest in peace my friend. Semper Fi.

Carl Weston

Originally posted to the Sgt Grit Newsletter

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Iwo Jima - Reunion of Honor

Iwo Jima Survivor Veterans recently made a trip back to Iwo Jima for the Reunion of Honor held this March 2012.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Kids couch

Stepping into the archive from a Joyal gathering about 1959:


From left to right:
Stephen - 5 years
Eileen - 2 months
Michael - 17 months
Susan - 2 years
David - 3 years
Alan - 1 year
Elaine - 2 years
Bobby - 3 years
Paul - 4 months

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Gary Sinise Makes A Moving Tribute

Academy Award Nominee Gary Sinise Makes a Moving Spoken Word Performance, honoring one of our brave servicemen from WWII

Monday, March 12, 2012

Soldiers Deck of Cards

There has been a pause in posting here. Another passing in Jerry's extended family occurred suddenly and unexpectedly. Another weekend spent with a family funeral. Necessary time. Family time. Celebrating the life that was, the lives that will continue to go on - remembering.

Aunt Viv sent this along via email and I just had time to view and share here. Well worth watching.

Enjoy each day! Make the most of each day!

Friday, March 2, 2012


The flag from Jerry's service and two recognitions

Flag and recognitions

The House of Representatives, State of RI sent this formal recognition for Jerry

State of RI - inside

Some folks may quibble about the timeliness of state services, in this case, Jerry's obituary was in the newspaper on Wednesday and this arrived in the mail on Friday. A very quick turn and much appreciated!

St Raphael Academy, where Jerry was not only a graduate but then later served as President of the Parents Association while the boys were attending school, sent along this recognition:

St Raphael Academy recognition

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Rita and Jerry

Rita and Jerry down at East Matunuck, RI

east Matunuck

Dad and Mom in the hallway at St Raphael Academy. One of the times that Dad headed the parent association there (as indicated by the gavel).

sixty's M&D

One of my favorite photos of Mom and Dad. The holiday (Christmas) table at Division St

mom and dad 5

Another photo at Division St. Would be later in the 70's I think.

New Years Eve

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

More photos!

Bob found this photo of Jerry when he played baseball as a youngster

1940 Sacred Heart CYO Champs

Helen sent along this photo of Jerry taken at the Brouillard Christmas gathering Dec 11, 2012


Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Jerry and Marine cutting the cake at the 2010 Birthday Dinner

Steve Cileli sent this photo of the youngest MARINE and the Oldest MARINE cutting the cake. The photo was taken at the 2010 Birthday Dinner

In a strange twist, that MARINE folded the flag at the Funeral for Jerry on Saturday.  Dan Cunningham is the other MARINE at the left of Jerry in the photo.

He was not told until after the Funeral.  Jerry had a large circle of people he knew.  It continues to amaze me how over and over again Jerry knew a great many of us.  It appears that there is only about one degree of separation among us...  He and Jones are smiling down on all of us.  Rita is in the background, waiting on them patiently, at the dinner table.

And On The Seventh Day When GOD Rested,
We Overran His Perimeter And Stole The Globe,
We Stole The Eagle From The Air Force,
The Anchor From The Navy,
The Rope From The Army,
And Have Been Protecting Our Shores Ever Since.
                  UNKNOWN MARINE

Jerry's favorite cap

Jerry treasured this cap and wore it all the time

IwoJima_a new hat for Jerry's collection

This picture was taken the day he received it before he had even put it on.

It had been worn and washed a few time before appearing here:

Funeral home 1

Watch for film on the "Ghost Army"

The Boston Globe West ran an article on the "Ghost Army" and this line in particular caught my eye:
The elder McGlynn did not divulge any details of his service with the 3132d Signal Service Company until he read the information had been declassified. As a result, his wife and six children only learned of his role in the Ghost Army’s sonic deception unit four years ago.

“Those were my orders," recalled McGlynn, a retired staff sergeant who will turn 90 on Sunday, “and I followed them."
This sounds so much like Jerry and others of his generation!

Next week, Beyer will host a two-day event in Lexington to promote his independent documentary, “Artists of Deception: The Ghost Army of World War II," and an accompanying book of the same name coauthored with Elizabeth Sayles of Valley Cottage, N.Y. The event will be held at the Lexington Depot. 
“Not only were these men brave enough to be operating right near the front lines with inflatable tanks, but they were creating this amazing art while they did it," said Beyer, a lifelong history enthusiast and writer who has made films for the History Channel, National Geographic Channel, and the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History. 
“The Army was using creativity to save lives, but the men were exercising their own creativity in this awful environment."

This is quite the story, click through to the Boston Globe to read the full article.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Funeral Home

For those who were unable to make it to the services for Jerry, here are some photos of the funeral home setup.

Funeral home 3

Funeral home 2

Funeral home 4

Funeral home 1

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Mike Sherlock remembers the lesson from Dad

Mike Sherlock delivered these remarks at the service for Jerry on Saturday morning. Speaking for his brothers and sisters, he said very well what we all thought.

Today, as part of our services, there are salutes to Jerry Sherlock's years of military service during the
Second World War. It's to honor a young man who was presented with extraordinary challenges and
met them, head on.

I'd like to take a few minutes to reflect on something equally significant: He showed us the power in the
grace and dignity in the ordinary life he returned to.

Jerry didn't talk a lot about Christian values -- he lived them, and we watched him.

As a father, he gave us his time and his attention. Endless sporting events, long distance college move-in
trips, parent's committees -- there were six of us, and all very active. But you name it, and he was there.
No discussion; I'm pretty sure he never thought much about it. He said he'd be there, and he always
was. It's just what he did.

We grew up watching him being a friend; going out of his way to make his bachelor neighbor and coworker Bob feel like part of our family. After many years, Bob grew terminally ill, and my father was by
his side at every step - visiting him, driving him to appointments, managing his expenses. By the end, I'd
say Jerry was Bob's family. He never really talked about it to us. I just grew up thinking this is what a
man does.

Once, when I was young, we were out driving and stopped by a broken down car at the side of the road.
My father told the guy he'd help, and he did: we drove the guy to an auto parts store, waited for him,
and drove him back to his car. My father never said a word to me about it, you know; it was just an
ordinary day to him.

Jerry fought against the Japanese in the War. In the early Seventies, a Japanese family moved in
upstairs. My parents welcomed them into our house, and the little kids became Patti’s playmates. I was
around when someone asked him if living so close to Japanese people made him uncomfortable. He said
no, they’re just people. The Japanese soldiers didn’t want to be in the war any more than the Americans
did. And that was pretty much all he said about it. He kept that friendship going for many years; long
after the family had moved back to Japan.

When Jerry married Rita, he made a vow that included "in sickness and in health", and "till death do us
part". For 34 years, his love and respect for her were unwavering. When she was stricken with cancer,
we watched him at my mother's side until the very last second. And we know he meant every word of
his vow. He didn't talk about the vow to us, he simply kept it.

So on behalf of my brothers and sisters, I'd like to thank him for this gift he left. And of course, he never
talked about it, but he taught us this anyway:

Ordinary days --

  lived in devotion to others,

  with loyalty and respect, and

  with promises kept --

  these ordinary days will accumulate over a lifetime

  and become something quite extraordinary.

     And for that lesson, I'll be forever grateful.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Jerry through the years - a sampler

Jerry as a youngster

Papa young

Jerry in the Marines

papa- soldier

Jerry in the 1960's

sixty's dad

Jerry at work (70-80's?)

dad work

Jerry for a recent Marine Corp Anniversary dinner