Jerry F. O’Connell, 61, of Naples, Fla., passed away Tuesday, January 8, 2019, peacefully in his sleep.
Jerry was born in Austin, Minn., on November 24, 1957. He graduated from Spring Valley High School. Jerry started working in the family business with his dad and brothers before and after gradation.
Jerry married the love of his life, Ronda. They were joined in marriage on February 25, 1984, and have enjoyed 35 years of marriage.
Jerry worked as a heavy equipment operator and foreman for Mitchel & Stark since 1984. He learned from the best, watching his dad Nickolas. Jerry enjoyed demolition derbys and Sunday morning Harley rides for breakfast and bloody Marys. Jerry could fix any small engine that needed fixing. He entered many backhoe rodeos and competitions over the years, often coming home with the trophy. He was the best backhoe operator around. Jerry spent his life working hard and enjoying his beer. He took pride in taking care of his family and was always there for anyone in need.
Jerry is survived by his loving wife Ronda, three children: Crystal (Marcus) O’Connell of Naples, Fla., Jake (Sarah) O’Connell of Kansas City, Mo., and Amanda (Andrew) Courtney of Alva, Fla.; six grandchildren: Kaleiha, Marcus, Tremario, Marissa, Madison, and Abigail. Jerry spent his free time heckling and teasing his grandkids, but he met his match with his grandson Tremario, who wasn’t taking his crap. He is also survived by brothers and sisters: Jim (Vicky) O’Connell of Spring Valley, Minn., Dave (Laure) O’Connell of Hudson, Wis., Joe (Patty) O’Connell of Spring Valley, Minn., Lori (Alec) of Grand Meadow, Minn., Bryan (Kathy) of Spring Valley, Minn., Wayne (Brenda) O’Connell of Byron, Minn., and Lana (Dave) Blanchard of Spring Valley, Minn.
He was preceded in death by his parents Nickolas O’Connell in April 1999, and Lois O’Connell in September 2018.
The family of Jerry will have a private celebration of life at their home.