Gerald Lewis Fitch, 88, passed away Wednesday, August 30, 2017 at a local hospital following a life well lived.
Gerry was born on June 19, 1929 in St. Paul, Minnesota. He was the oldest son of Floyd Fitch and Joanna (Hofer) Farnsworth.
Gerry spent his early years growing up in St. Paul and Outing, Minnesota. In 1947, the family moved west, settling initially in Emmett, Idaho and then moving on to Coeur d’Alene, Idaho in 1949. Gerry took $200 out of his savings and spent several months “on the bum”, working odd jobs in the Pacific Northwest and southwestern Canada. In November 1950, Gerry joined the US Army and was stationed at Ft. Lewis, Washington for basic training. Following basic training, he was stationed in Linz and Salzburg, Austria. He enjoyed his time in Austria and made many lifetime friends and until recently, he regularly attended the annual reunions of his 11th AAA Battery C group.
After serving in the Army, Gerry used the GI Bill and enrolled at the University of Idaho where he graduated in June 1957 with a bachelor’s degree in dairy sciences. On June 11, 1957, a few days following his graduation, Gerry married the love of his life, Bertha (Neprud) Fitch in Spokane, Washington. In 1958 their first son, Andrew, was born in Spokane and two years later their second son, Timothy, was born in Kirkland, Washington.
Gerry had a long and distinguished career as a lab technician and lab director in the dairy industry. He worked for Pet Milk in Buhl, Idaho and Arden Farms Spokane. He joined Safeway in 1958 and during his employment with Safeway he worked at their production plants in Bellevue, Washington and Hanford, California. In 1970, Gerry accepted the lab director position with Dairymen’s Creamery Association (now Darigold) in Caldwell. He retired from Darigold in 1993.
Whether it was hunting, fishing or just puttering around the yard, Gerry enjoyed the outdoors, but he loved fishing the most. He was a long-time member of the Gem State Fly Fishers Club and served terms as its president and treasurer. He was also an active and proud member of the American Legion and served as the chairman of its Boys State program for many years.
He leaves behind his wife of 60 years, Bertha, of Caldwell; his sons, Andrew (Katie) of Vancouver, Washington, and Timothy (Carol) of Nampa, brothers Lawrence Farnsworth of Beverly Hills, California, and John Farnsworth (Dixie) of Bend, Oregon. He also leaves behind four grandsons, nine great grandchildren, and many nephews and nieces. He was predeceased by his father, mother, step-father and an infant granddaughter.
In lieu of flowers, the family would like to suggest donations to the Faith Lutheran Evangelical Lutheran Church/Treasure Valley Christian Church Food Bank.
Memorial Services are pending.