Geraldine Luella Hopkins Hursey was born April 18, 1928, to Clifford H. Hopkins and Georgia P. Hopkins (nee Stribling), and entered peacefully into eternal life Tuesday, April 19, 2016, while living at the Illini Restorative Care Center in Silvis.
She was born and raised in Independence, Mo., where she graduated from high school and attended the National College for Christian Workers before moving to East St. Louis to work at the Leslie Bates Davis Neighborhood House. It was there she met her future husband, and on Sept. 17, 1948, Jerri married Wesley H. Hursey. They were married nearly 60 years before Wesley’s death in 2008.
Jerri was a loving wife and mother and will be dearly missed by those who were blessed to know her. She was active in her community and church all her adult life. When her children were young, Jerri was a member of the PTA and served as room mother. She was a devout Christian and served God at her church in various positions including organist, pianist, assistant with children’s choirs, director of Vacation Bible School, Sunday School teacher and sponsor of many summer Back Yard Bible Clubs. She volunteered at area soup kitchens and led Bible studies for women in prison. Most recently Jerri was a member of Suburban Baptist Church in Granite City, and after moving to Cambridge House in Swansea, Ill., she attended Sunday School classes and worship services at St. Matthew United Methodist Church in Belleville. Until the time of her death, Jerri was active in The Auxiliary of Gideons International and worked tirelessly in their Bible distribution program, sharing the love of God and the hope of Jesus Christ. Jerri never met a stranger and was quick to reach out to those in need. She not only shared her faith, she lived it every day, offering prayer and a kind word to all she met.
Jerri was preceded in death by her parents and her husband.
Left to cherish her memory are Jerri’s six children and their spouses, Linda Evans (Warren) of Spring, Texas, Diane Komeshak (Pat) of Granite City, Patricia Morman (Dennis) of Maitland, Fla., John Hursey (Erica) of Coal Valley, Ill., Carol Sloan (Jay) of Fairmont, W. Va., and Karen Mclaughlin (Brent) of Miami Shores, Fla.; as well as her 15 grandchildren; 14 great-grandchildren; her brother, Clifford E. Hopkins, numerous cousins, nieces and nephews.
Visitation will be held from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday, April 21, 2016, at Irwin Chapel, 3960 Maryville Road, Granite City, with funeral services to be held at 9 a.m. Friday, April 22, 2016, at Unity Baptist Church (formerly Suburban Baptist Church), 2500 St. Clair Ave., Granite City. Burial will follow at Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery, 2900 Sheridan Road, St. Louis.
The family would like to thank Illini Restorative Care Center and Genesis Hospice for the loving care they provided to Jerri in the last months of her life. In lieu of flowers, contributions in Jerri’s memory may be made to The Gideons International or Genesis Hospice at 2546 Tech Drive, Bettendorf, Iowa, 52722; www.irwinchapel.com.