Jerry Ray Payne 1950 - 2020

Jerry Ray Payne was born July 7, 1950, in McMinnville, Oregon, to parents Lester Loren and Frances Lorene (Jones) Payne.

He graduated from McMinnville High School in 1969 after striking a deal with the principal to sweep the cafeteria floors daily in exchange for a diploma. After graduation, Jerry proudly joined the U.S. Marine Corps. He finished boot camp at Camp Pendleton and went to Vietnam, where he was a gunner on a 105 Howitzer. While in service, Jerry earned the National Defense Service Medal, the Vietnam Service Medal, the Vietnam Campaign Medal, but he was most proud of the Rifle Marksman Badge. While in service, he gained the rank of lance corporal.

A few months after his return from Vietnam, he met his wife, Brenda (Bellows), and they were married on February 17, 1973. Jerry and Brenda had two daughters, Parri and Trisha, and in 1984 adopted their son, Tyler, from Guatemala. Jerry worked at Skyline Mobile Homes, then spent 17 years as a welder foreman at Northwest Marine Iron Works in Portland. In 1995, Jerry went to work at Cascade Steel in McMinnville and became foreman there. He proudly retired in 2014 after giving his one-week notice.

Jerry loved fishing, hunting and classic cars, especially his 1950 Ford Coupe, which he spent the last three years restoring. He proudly drove his car in McMinnville’s Draggin’ the Gut Festival and attended many local car shows. Jerry had four grandkids who were his absolute greatest joys. He tried to attend as many functions with them as he could, whether it was his granddaughter Aubrey’s dance recitals and her college graduation in California; his granddaughter Gabby’s choir concerts and FFA  auctions, his grandson Andrew’s football games, tennis matches and college graduation; and his grandson Nicolas, who shared his love of corndogs. Jerry was fiercely proud of each one of them. Jerry will be GREATLY missed by his family but we all take comfort in the fact that we will be reunited one day in the kingdom of heaven.

Jerry is survived by his wife of 47 years, Brenda; their son, Tyler of Carlton; his daughter, Parri, and her husband Pete of Forest Grove, and their children, Aubrey and Andrew; and his daughter, Trisha, and her husband Jeff of Bend, and her two children, Gabby and Nicolas. Jerry also leaves behind eight brothers and sisters.

Jerry will be buried with military honors at Willamette National Cemetery at a date to be determined.

 

 

 

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