Gerald Edwin Mathews Sr., of Grand Rapids, lost his battle with cancer on Monday, February 20, 2017. He was 91 years’ young. “Jer” was a quick-witted story teller who had the love of his life, “Shirl”, in a constant state of the giggles. His greatest joy was watching his children and grandchildren play sports. He was proud to serve in the US Navy for 5 plus years. After his military service, he met his wife of 66 years, Shirley Ann and they had 4 lovely children. He was preceded in death by his son Gerald Edwin Mathews, Jr. “Sparky”. He is survived by his wife Shirley; son, Tony (Bernadette) Welmers; daughters, Trudy (Gary) Kennedy, Amy Mathews and friend Tony: grandchildren and extended family; Nikki, Andy, Beau, Robin, Cole, Rachel, great grandchildren: Olivia, Landen, Ava, Alje and Taylor. At Jerry’s request, the family will have a private graveside military memorial along with pizza and beer.