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Obituary for Marshall ‘Jerry’ Jerome Merrill

January 18, 1938 – March 25, 2023

Marshall Jerome Merrill, “Jerry”, age 85, passed away peacefully with his family by his side on Saturday, March 25, 2023. He was born on Jan. 18, 1938, the second of seven children of Rodney and Ruth (Nee: Thomas) Merrill, in Racine, where he was raised, and graduated from Racine Lutheran High School “Class of 1956.”

He proudly served in the U.S. Navy Reserves from 1960 until he served aboard the USS Intrepid (1962-1964) and then returned to the U.S. Navy Reserves until early 1966. He was aboard the Intrepid at the Bay of Pigs during the Cuban Missile Crisis.

Marshall “Jerry” Jerome Merrill
Marshall “Jerry” Jerome Merrill

It was at a roller rink party that a pretty young lady by the name of Margaret (Marge) Winterle caught his eye, and on June 27, 1964, they were united in marriage at St. John’s Lutheran Church. They shared the same anniversary as her own parents, Reinhardt and Meta (Nee: Schlei) Winterle.

Jerry was a painter by trade and had worked many years for Postorino Painting & Decorating, retiring at age 55 due to health concerns. Not one to stay idle, Jerry volunteered at Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare/Ascension All Saints, the Red Cross, and at Racine Lutheran High school on the football chain gang and running the basketball scoreboard.

He was always involved with everything that his kids were involved with, whether it was helping out with Boy Scouts while his son, Todd, was growing up, flying with his daughter, Wendy, after she earned her Private Pilot certificate, or watching his youngest daughter, Holly, pitch a no-hitter during one of her many softball games. He didn’t do much of this on his own. His wife Marge was always with him watching what their kids were doing as well. She accompanied him on many outings to watch airplanes taking off and landing at various airports, watch construction at many locations, and catch the local ball games.

He was an avid model railroader and enjoyed radio-controlled boats as well. He could fix just about anything and never hesitated to lend a helping hand whenever anyone needed something. He enjoyed keeping in touch with his shipmates as well. Above all, Jerry treasured time spent with all of his family. He was a devoted husband, father, grandfather and brother who will be dearly missed.

Surviving are his wife of nearly 59 years, Margaret; three children, Todd (Patty) Merrill, Wendy (Mark) Burkinshaw, and Holly (Jason) Coe; six grandchildren, Jessica and Thomas Merrill, Andrew and Sarah Burkinshaw, and Corbin and Spencer Coe; siblings, Larry (Karen) Merrill, John (Barb) Merrill, Pat (Gary) Rock, and Kathy Merrill; in-laws, Rich Winterle, Don Winterle, Bob (Birgit) Winterle, Larry Winterle, Wally Winterle, and Jim Stratman; nieces, nephews, other relatives, and dear friends. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by sisters, Mary Fetzer and Sue Stratman; and in-laws, Harold “Butch” Winterle, Bud and Marlene Winterle, Clariss Winterle, Cathy Winterle, and Betty Winterle.


Funeral services will be held at Maresh-Meredith & Acklam Funeral Home on Wednesday, April 5, 2023, at 12:30 p.m. with Reverend David Hintz officiating. Interment with full military honors will follow at Southern Wisconsin Veterans Memorial Cemetery, Town of Dover. Relatives and friends may meet with the family at the funeral home on Tuesday, from 5-7 p.m., and Wednesday from 11:30 a.m. until the time of service. Memorials to the Grace Lutheran Church Elevator Fund or Racine Lutheran High School have been suggested.

The family wishes to extend a special thank you to Dr. Lisa Wolf and Nurse Heather from Aurora at Home for her loving and compassionate care.

Obituary and photo courtesy of Maresh-Meredith & Acklam Funeral Home.

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