Esselman, Gerald "Gerry" of Plymouth, Minnesota was born in Sauk Rapids, MN on March 16, 1937. He passed away on September 17, 2019 after a four- year battle with mantle-cell lymphoma. Gerald is survived by his wife of 57 years, Renee (Wolf); one son, Tom (Joette) Esselman; five daughters, Lynda (Mark) Graham, Cheryl (Mike) Schwagel, Shelly (John) Holloway, Julie Esselman (Doug Prahl), and Tina (Andy) Kotten; 20 grandchildren, 10 great-grandchildren and brothers Donald (Janice) and Wayne (Janet). Gerald was preceded in death by his parents, Henry and Ruth Esselman of St. Cloud, MN and brothers David and Dale. A large part of Gerald's life was devoted to education. He valued it for himself, while also valuing it for others. Gerald graduated from St. John's University in Collegeville, MN and received his Master's Degree in Education from St. Cloud State. He started his career teaching English and coaching debate at St. Cloud Cathedral High School. In 1962, he relocated to Mound, MN where he continued his teaching career. At Mound Westonka High School, he taught English and helped lead the development of the Work-Study program. He retired in 1995 after 33 years of teaching. Gerry played on and managed a local St. Cloud baseball team in his earlier years. He also enjoyed playing hockey, softball, and football with some of his students and fellow teachers. While at St. John's University, Gerald began his military career. Subsequently, he was a proud member of the US Army National Guard, where he served for 28 years and retired at the rank of Lt. Colonel. Gerald and Renee enjoyed 24 years of retirement, often spent with all of his family. Saturday evenings were a common gathering time in either Plymouth or Mound with all who were available. Gerald was exceptionally proud of the achievements of all of his children and grandchildren. Special thanks to the Hospice staff of Park Nicollet, J.A. Wedum Residential Hospice, and Synergy HomeCare for their compassionate care of Gerald. Friends and family are invited to a memorial wake on 9/28/19 at 10:30AM at St. Joseph's Parish Community (8701 36th Ave. N, New Hope, MN) followed by a Mass of Resurrection at 11:30AM. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to ISD 277 Mound Westonka Special Education or J.A. Wedum Residential Hospice. Inurnment will be at Ft. Snelling at a future date. Condolences: Gearty-Delmore Funeral Chapels gearty-delmore.com 763-553-1411
Gerald 'Gerry' Esselman
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