Gerald (Jerry) McAuley, Ontario
Gerald (Jerry) McAuley - 1936 - 2001
Passed away October 16, 2001, at his home on the Fox Lake Reserve near Chapleau, Ontario at the age of 65 years.
Son of Alexander and Isabella McAuley (nee Turner); brother of Joseph Turner (wife Margaret-Ann, predeceased,) and brother of Marian McAuley and Margaret Rose Armstrong, and brother to Rodney and Arthur McAuley.
Jerry was a former employee of the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources at Chapleau and Moosonee for 37 years. Jerry leaves a legacy of friends of all ages. Funeral services were held at the Church of the Epiphany, 85 Larch Street, in Sudbury.
Eulogy - Jerry McAuley
He was 65 years old; the 2nd youngest child born to Parents Alexander and Isabella McAuley.
Jerry grew up with his family and siblings in the Chapleau area, and as a child, spent a lot of time in the surrounding bush and the area around Big Missinnabi Lake.
As a young man, he attended Ranger school, which lead to a lifetime career with the Ontario Department of Lands and Forest, now known as the Ministry of Natural Resources. For twenty years he worked in the Forestry section at the Chapleau Office. He was promoted to Field Supervisor for the Moosonee District in 1975.
Jerry's work at Moosonee took him into the field along the coasts of James Bay and Hudson Bay. Dealing with Chiefs and Councils, he was always respectful of the differences particular to each community; believe me, there were plenty.
He volunteered to eight organizations in Moosonee; the Anglican Church, the Lion's Club, Non-Profit Housing, Minor Hockey, the Adult Education Centre, the Moosonee Development Area and the Cree Alliance. He worked diplomatically with all organizations. In each, he was instrumental in positive change. He cared for others, and he showed it. Jerry's commitment was 110%.
After retirement, Jerry spent even more time volunteering on committees and social outings with friends, a favorite was playing cards with Maude and Katie.
He was very supportive of youth sports, especially hockey. After he left Moosonee, I would call Jerry to say we were taking teams out to a tournament. It was no surprise to find him in the bleachers cheering along with the rest of the Moosonee fans.
The dedication that Jerry put forth on the job and in his volunteer work was exactly the way he was with family and friends. While living in Moosonee, most of the family came to visit for varying lengths of stay.
When family members or friends faced a crisis, he would be helpful and do whatever he could do to assist. He took on the responsibility for caring for his nine-year-old great-nephew, Stuart. Jerry was a people person, and always considerate of those around him, always welcoming family and friend to his home, always giving and asking very little in exchange.
When northern health care providers were getting few and far between, Jerry decided to leave Moosonee. He moved to Sudbury for a period of time, and then and in the fall of 2000, he returned to his home ground at Chapleau.
Back home, Jerry was in the midst of running for Chief of his First Nation. As always, his concern first priority was for his people. Being home, he took the opportunity return into the bush, to fish and hunt, and shortly before his passing went moose hunting on the trails that he and brother 'Butch' had ventured as young men.
Cheryl, one of his nieces, asked his grand nephews and nieces if they would describe their uncle in one word. Their responses? "Wise; Great; Loving; Nice; Funny; Considerate; Unique; intelligent; Helpful; Gentle; Kind; Amazing; Respectful; Supportive; Unconditionally loving; Honourable. Out o the mouths of babes comes truth. Ulrich, said it best; "He was a great man."