Jerry John Joseph Green lived for his loved ones and for himself in that order. He was a
compassionate, earnest person at heart, but a streetwise survivor by trade. He was what he
needed to be whenever he needed to be it. He was a still point to many, and he will not – he
cannot – be forgotten.
Jerry was born on December 15, 1955 in Halls, Tennessee. His parents – G.W. Green and
Willie Alene – were itinerant farm workers who moved to Chicago for work in a factory when
Jerry was six years old. They lived in the Uptown neighborhood on the Northside of Chicago
where poverty was the norm. He was the sixth of seven sons. His mother, Willie Alene was an
anchor and loving guide to him and his brothers. With a strong faith in God and the love she
gave to her sons, all seven were able to go on and live productive lives. Six of Willie’s seven
sons served in the military. Jerry joined the Marine Corps. in 1972 and was honorably
discharged in early 1977. He was dealt a hand of negative health conditions early and
throughout his life, but he overcame them through sheer will and a refusal to be bested. He
survived, supported his family, and served his country.
Fresh out of the military, Jerry was led to Moira in 1977 because of a love for blues music, and
chance led them back to one another in 1986. Months later, Moira joined Jerry in Arizona to
begin a life together, where Jerry had been living since 1981. Jerry worked for Independent
Newspapers in their advertising department, as well as doing stunt and character shows with
Buffalo Rick’s Wild West along with Rick and his wife, Connie. Over the years, they entertained
thousands of people at numerous Arizona resorts and Pinnacle Peak Patio. Jerry later worked
for the Maricopa County government in several different agencies, including the Medical
Examiner’s Office. He returned to school at the age of 38 to earn his Bachelor’s degree in
business and then his Master’s degree in business administration by the time he was 43. He
worked as a business manager at MedPro overseeing the billing services for Maricopa Co.
Hospital. Due to increasing health issues, suffering of a heart attack, and undergoing quadruple
by-pass surgery in 1999 Jerry was unable to continue working full time. Ever restless and eager
to keep busy, Jerry began working as a substitute teacher for the Paradise Valley and Scottsdale
school districts. His longest and favorite assignment was as a drama teacher, which gave him
an opportunity to flex his creative abilities.
He was an avid reader and writer all of his life. He wrote numerous scripts, short stories, a
musical, and poems. He and his co-writer, Tom Wheeler, had one of their scripts, RTO,
produced at Scottsdale Community College. Jerry was also an avid history enthusiast. He had a
deep respect and adoration for all who fought for our Country. His Uncle Jake Smith and
father-in-law, Edward J. Egan, were both WWII veterans who had fought at the Battle of the
Bulge. He was in awe of them and their experiences.
Jerry was insightful and often playfully instigating. He knew how to have fun and was always a
welcome sight to anyone who knew him. He had a comforting presence. He always tried to see
the good in people and rarely, if ever, complained.
His family was his pride and joy. He doubted he would make it to age 18, let alone marry and
have children. His driving force throughout his life was love of family, especially over the last
twenty years where he began his journey of faith to the Lord. God made the best out of Jerry’s
physical and mental sufferings. He was baptized into the Catholic Church at the Easter Vigil in
2010 and his faith grew with each passing year. He fought most Sundays just to feel well
enough to go to mass and receive the Holy Eucharist or to pray before the Blessed Sacrament in
Adoration. He was able to make the healing mass at St. Simon and Jude Cathedral on February
9, 2019, where he received the Anointing of the Sick from auxiliary Bishop Eduardo Nevares.
Then 13 days later, he received the sacrament of Last Rites, from Father Reggie Carreon, and is
now resting peacefully and pain free in the arms of Jesus and Blessed Mother Mary.
Jerry is survived by his devoted wife, Moira (nee Egan), beloved son and daughter, Kevin and
Sara, three brothers, Michael, William and Shelton Green; niece Michelle Green, great nephew
Ryder Germana, who was also Jerry’s godson, and several other nieces, nephews and cousins.
He was predeceased by his father, G.W. Green, mother Willie Alene Green, brothers Wayne
Sanders, Bill Sanders and Richard Green, as well as his nephew, Ricky Sanders, and nieces
Wendy and Haley Ford.
Jerry John Joseph Green will be missed more than can be expressed in words.
A visitation and rosary will be held at Hansen’s Mortuary and Funeral Home, located at 6500
East Bell Road, Scottsdale, Arizona on Thursday, March 7 from 4:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Jerry’s funeral mass will be held on Friday, March 8 at 10:00 a.m. at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church,
located at 11001 North 40 Street, Phoenix, Arizona. On Tuesday, March 12 at 10:15 a.m.
Jerry will be laid to rest at the National Memorial Cemetery of Arizona, 23029 North Cave Creek
Road, Phoenix, Arizona after being brought to the National Cemetery by the Patriots Guard
from Hansen Funeral Home in Scottsdale.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Disabled American Veterans, 3333 North Central
Avenue, Phoenix, Arizona 85012.