Gerald L. Decker Obituary

Gerald L. Decker
Gerald L. Decker

October 11, 1921 - October 3, 2017
Born in Midland, Michigan
Resided in Saginaw, Michigan
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Passed away peacefully on Tuesday, October 3, 2017, at Vista Gardens Memory Care in Vista, California. Age 95 years. Gerald ("Jerry") was born October 11, 1921, in Midland, Michigan, son of the late Harold and Bernice (Brady) Decker. Jerry married the love of his life, Florence Soper, in 1943, and they enjoyed 73 wonderful years together. She survives him. Jerry was devoted to his wife and family and he will be greatly missed. Jerry graduated Midland High School in 1939, where he excelled in sports. He served his country in the U.S. Army Air Corps during WWII. He earned a Bachelor of Physics from Alma College and a Master of Science in Nuclear Physics and Chemistry from the University of Michigan. He enjoyed a distinguished career with Dow Chemical Company in Midland, MI, where he served as Corporate Energy Manager until 1978, when he became Vice President of Kaiser Aluminum and Chemical Corporation in Oakland, CA. In 1981, he co-founded Decker Energy International, Inc., a private power development company.
He received awards too numerous to mention, but which included the U.S. Secretary of Commerce's Special Medal, the National Energy Resources Organization's Distinguished Service Award, and the American Institute of Chemical Engineers' Service to Society Award. In his eighties, he traveled to Poland, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan numerous times to conduct energy audits for the U.S. Agency for International Development. In 2002, he co-founded Midland Energy LLC, developing wind energy projects across Michigan.
Jerry's love for God and his desire to spread that love both near and far was the defining characteristic of his life. He was an active member of the Church of the Nazarene, serving both locally and worldwide, including board membership of both Olivet Nazarene University and Point Loma Nazarene University. A highlight of his life was leading a team in 2000 to assist in building a Nazarene church in Kazakhstan.
Besides his wife he is survived by two daughters, Susan (Steve) Caudill of Carlsbad, CA, and Mimi (Randy) Bartkowiak of Oceanside, CA; four grandchildren, Steve (Amy) Caudill of Temecula, CA, Chris (Katie) Caudill of Temecula, CA, Jenna (Alex) Kowalkoski of Huntley, IL, and Ashley (Aaron) Olsen of Oceanside, CA; and nine great-grandchildren, Claire Caudill, Kaitlin Kowalkoski, Travis Kowalkoski, Olivia Olsen, Jude Caudill, Quincy Caudill, Lucas Olsen, Charlotte Caudill, and Hazel Caudill. Jerry was the eldest of seven children and he is survived by his brother Donald Decker of Midland, Michigan. He was predeceased by siblings Arnold Decker, Evelyn Calkins, Burton Decker, Barbara Jasman, and Sharon Koerner.
A funeral service will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday, October 11, 2017, at the Saginaw Valley Nazarene Church, 1815 Tittabawassee Rd., with Rev. Randy Owens officiating, and committal to follow at Roselawn Gardens. Military honors will be under the auspices of the Carrollton VFW Post #1859 and the Michigan National Guard. Memorial visitation will be held on Tuesday, October 10, 2017, from 4:00 pm to 8:00 pm at W. L. Case and Co. Funeral Chapel, 4480 Mackinaw Rd. in Saginaw, and also on Wednesday at the church from 10:00 am until the time of service. Those planning an expression of sympathy may wish to consider Olivet University, Saginaw Valley Nazarene Church, or Nazarene Global Missions.

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W. L. Case and Company, Mackinaw
4480 Mackinaw Rd.
Saginaw Charter Township, MI United States 48603
Tuesday, October 10, 2017
4:00 PM - 8:00 PM
Saginaw Valley Nazarene Church
1815 Tittabawassee
Saginaw, Michigan USA 48604
Wednesday, October 11, 2017
11:00 AM