Farming Rural 12

Gerald L Jacobson Sr.

April 9, 1941 ~ December 9, 2020 (age 79)


Gerald Jacobson SR

April 9, 1941 – December 9, 2020


Gerald (Jerry) Lee Jacobson was born on 4-9-41 in Battle Creek, Iowa.  He was the first born child to Burton and Irene (Zech) Jacobson.  In 1959 he graduated from Wykoff High School in Wykoff, Minnesota.  August 14, 1966 he married Lois Finckh in Reading, Minnesota.  They made their home in Wykoff where they raised 2 children.  Lois passed away on March 25, 1998.  He was a mechanic at Opsall-Kavanagh Motors in Wykoff starting in 1960 and working until the business closed in 2010. 

He had civic pride in Wykoff and was happy to have raised a family, worked and supported businesses in Wykoff.  He would regularly say, there is no place else I would rather live.   He was a 37 year member of the Wykoff Volunteer Fire Department.  He was very proud of his attendance and rarely missed a business or training meeting.  Many years he would schedule summer vacations around those meeting schedules.  He was most proud of when he was able to work fire calls on mutual aid helping neighboring communities when needed.

He was a charter member of the Wykoff Area Historical Society and was treasurer for many years.  He was a member of the Wykoff United Methodist Church and would usher when called upon.  He was a strong advocate for preserving history which lead him to being a supporter of the Fillmore County History Center and the Olmsted County History Center.  He was a member of the Mechanical History Round Table, a vintage tractor and equipment organization in Rochester.   It allowed him and others to work with the older four cylinder tractors and use some equipment that operated by belt pulley including grain threshers and saw mills.  He enjoyed participating in tractor pulls at these events and was proud of the trophies he won considering his tractors were basic stock tractors.

He enjoyed antique tractors and old cars.   He owned 4 antique Allis-Chalmers tractors.  He would also say that every tractor manufacturer made good models and some that were not so good.  He especially admired the Farmall F 20 tractor.  He was especially proud to have participated in a tractor caravan drive that allowed him and others to drive their tractors across the International border, driving from Oaks North Dakota to Porta-La-Prairie Manitoba Canada in 2004 to attend the Gathering of the Orange National tractor show.  He also attended national Allis-Chalmers tractor shows in Albert City Iowa and Kansas.  He enjoyed tent camping, road trips and drives around the county roads looking at the farms and houses in the country.  He also enjoyed county fairs, especially the “World’s Greatest County Fair” in Spencer Iowa to which he attended annually.

He was very proud of his 2 grandsons when they both became Eagle Scouts.  He enjoyed hearing about their Scouting activities and their school and work projects.  He was especially proud when both of his grandsons became Eagle Scouts.   He proudly wore a hat pin that read Proud Grandparent of an Eagle Scout.  He also enjoyed hearing about the latest build projects going on in his son in laws garage.


He enjoyed watching the History Channel on TV and especially admired President Franklin Delano Roosevelt for leading the county during the depression and WWII while confined to a wheelchair.

He took great pride in being able to identify current and former cars of Opsall-Kavanagh customers that he worked on. 

The Wykoff High School Class of 1959 holds a dear place in Jerry’s life experience and memories.  He enjoyed staying connected to many of his classmates up until his passing.

Jerry is survived by his daughter Leanne (Brad) Schnabl, Merrill, Wisconsin and Gerald Jr. of St Louis Park, MN.  Sisters: Linda of Wykoff; Barbara of Elkader, Iowa; Kathleen (Curtis) Ruhser of Elkader Iowa; and Charlene Czapiewski of Spring Valley.  Jerry is also survived by grandsons Aaron Schnabl of Merrill, Wisconsin and Jacob Schnabl of LaCrosse, Wisconsin.  Jerry is further survived by 4 nieces: Jennifer (Troy) Lange of Spring Valley, Nicole (Andy) Meyerhofer of Grand Meadow, Alison (Ryan) Sylvester of Galesburg, Illinois and Emily Ruhser of Dubuque, Iowa along with 3 great nieces and 6 great nephews.

Private family services will be held at this time with a celebration of life at a later date.

Leanne and Jerry Jr would like to thank the staff at the Chosen Valley Care Center and the Mayo Clinic Hospice for the wonderful assistance and care provided to Jerry over the past months.

To send flowers to Gerald's family, please visit our floral store.


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