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Gerald "Jerry" Van Hoosier Jr. '55 January 7, 2021 1:54 PM updated: January 7, 2021 2:20 PM

Gerald Leonard Van Hoosier, Jr. (Jerry)
June 4, 1934 - November 18, 2020

Gerald Leonard Van Hoosier, Jr., DVM , son of Gerald, Sr. and Louis Faye (Ashcroft) Van Hoosier, was born on June 4, 1934, in Weatherford, Texas, at the home of his maternal grandparents, William Starr and Annie (Pearson) Ashcroft. He passed away on November 18, 2020, in Seattle, Washington and was preceded in death by his parents, maternal grandparents, and paternal grandparents, Lemuel and Alice (Moore) Van Hoosier, and younger sister Jeannette Faye. He grew up in Weatherford, Sierra Blanca, Brownwood, and Abilene, Texas.

He graduated from Weatherford High School and in 1957, graduated from the College of Veterinary Medicine at Texas A&M. He was one of two graduates accepted into the Public Health Service in Washington D.C. and began his career in research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), focusing on the development, safety, and evaluation of polio vaccines. It was there he met his wife, Marlene Meyer, a nurse at NIH. On August 2nd of this year, they celebrated their sixtieth wedding anniversary. From there he moved to the faculty of Baylor Medical School in Houston, Texas, and then to the faculty at Washington State Veterinary School in Pullman, Washington. In 1975, he became a faculty member at the University of Washington Medical School in Seattle, Washington and was the founding chairman of the Department of Comparative Medicine, a role he retained until becoming an emeritus professor in 1995. He was the recipient of numerous awards including the Distinguished Alumni Award from the College of Veterinary Medicine at Texas A&M. He was a kind, thoughtful role model and true mentor for hundreds of veterinary students.

His family and friends will miss his love and resounding laughter, which could easily fill a room. He was a wonderful husband, father, grandfather, brother, grandson, nephew, uncle, cousin and friend. He enjoyed just about anything outdoors, including golf and mentoring young golfers, biking, fishing, tennis, and travel. He loved exceptional food, especially anything sweet! He enjoyed genealogy and worked many years on collecting and preserving family history for his sons, nephew and niece. No one who knew him will forget his passion for Aggie (Gig'm) and Husky Football.

Jerry understood the importance of family and was always there for support and guidance. Besides his wife, Marlene, he is survived by sons, Gunther and wife Jessamyn Van Hoosier of Henderson, NV, and Paul Van Hoosier of Ballard, WA; Grandchildren, Jordan Van Hoosier and wife Jenni and Evan Van Hoosier, all of Las Vegas, NV, and Parris Garcia and husband Robert of San Francisco, CA. Also, Garrett, Christopher, and Diana Van Hoosier and their mother Hortensia Van Hoosier, from Seattle and Edmonds, WA.; Great grandchildren, Venice and Kairo Garcia, and Beau Jordan Van Hoosier; Brother William Lemuel "Bill" Van Hoosier, DVM. and wife Roma of Dalworthington Gardens, TX; Nephew Brett E. Van Hoosier and wife Heather of North Richland Hills, TX and niece, Mary Elyn (Van Hoosier) Worsham and husband Cory of Mansfield, TX; Great nieces Bryn, Blaine, and Bella Van Hoosier, and Hadley Jo Worsham and great nephew William Dean Worsham.

A virtual memorial service to celebrate Jerry's life was held on December 12, 2020, at First Lutheran Church of Richmond Beach, Shoreline, Washington. At a later date, interment of ashes will be at East Greenwood Cemetery, Weatherford, Texas.

© 2021 by Weatherford Democrat

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