Gene R. Jackson born December 6, 1938, in Parma, MO died at 11 a.m. on September 2, 2020, in Albany.
Gene grew up in Missouri and then moved with his parents, sister, and late brother to Detroit, Michigan.
Later Gene joined the US Airforce and traveled to various places such as Spain and other colorful cities like Biloxi, MS. While serving his country, he met the love of his life, Connie Russell, a senior from Albany Union High School. He and Connie were married on September 23, 1961, after her graduation. Gene and Connie were married at the White Spires Church in Albany. Gene finished his career in the Airforce at Camp Adair in Albany as a Radar Technician.
Gene then went to work at the paper mill (then called Western Kraft) in Albany where he retired as a papermaker after more than 40 years. Gene delighted in going to his daughter’s grade school classroom to show the students how they could make paper themselves.
Gene was an avid fisherman and at one time held the record of the largest trout ever caught from Crane Prairie Reservoir in Central Oregon. The Rainbow trout measured 32 inches long and weighed 18 lbs!
After retiring, Gene and Connie liked to spend the summer months at Detroit Lake where they would host huge July 4th parties both on their boat and at the RV park. Lots of laughter, fun, and good times were had by all who came to Gene and Connie’s camping and boating parties.
Several years after Detroit, Gene and Connie began vacationing at the coast in Florence, OR at Woahink RV Park on Woahink Lake. Gene loved to take friends young and old, new friends, and even friendly strangers from the park, out on the pontoon boat for tours and fishing trips around the lake. Gene even had a special name for a very large trout he’d been trying to catch out of the lake called, “Walter”. But Walter was a whiley old fish and probably owns his own real estate in that lake by now.
Gene and Connie were long time members of the Elks, Eagles, and Legion out of both Lebanon and Albany.
Preceding him in death is his wife Connie; son Michael David; both parents; and brother. He is survived by his sister Sue; three daughters; two sons; several grandchildren and great-grandchildren; brother and sister-in-law David and Jackie Russell; sister-in-law June Tobey; many nieces and nephews and numerous “adopted” friends who called him “Grandpa or Uncle Gene”.
Gene’s compassion, generosity, and love have touched so many lives and he will be desperately missed until one day when we will all be together again.
There will be a viewing from 3-6 p.m. on Wed. Sept. 9th from 3-6 pm at AAsum-Dufour Funeral Home. A graveside with military honors will be at 2 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 10 at Willamette Memorial Park in Albany. The family will announce a Celebration of Life for both Gene and Connie at a later date.
AAsum-Dufour Funeral Home is handling the arrangements (www.aasum-dufour.com).
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