Jerry Lee Pritchard, 86, passed peacefully into a new life on Monday, April 27, 2020, in the presence of family at Berger Hospital in Circleville, Ohio.

Jerry was born in Circleville on March 12, 1934, the only child of Ezra and Udell Ayers Pritchard.

Although he had many interests as a child (he once made a recording singing and playing the trumpet), from an early age, his year-round love was sports. Jerry was a 1952 graduate of Circleville High School, where he lettered in football, basketball and baseball. Despite being the shortest member of the team, he was named Most Valuable Player of the 1950-51 basketball season — the first CHS player ever to achieve the honor as a junior.

After high school, Jerry continued his baseball career, first at Otterbein College and then professionally for one season in Florida. After a two-year stint in the United States Army, he returned to Circleville, where on May 27, 1961, he married Marlene Fetherolf. Jerry and Marlene were blessed with nearly 59 years together and one son, Matthew.

While he retained his interest in all sports, after his military service, Jerry was introduced to golf, which became a lifelong passion. He was an early member of Upper Lansdowne, where he played for years, and was elected Board Chairman in 1966. Upon retirement from DuPont, following 33 years of service, he became a member at Deer Creek, along with a dozen or more friends, and that group played together regularly for many years. In recent years, Jerry enjoyed spending time at Cook’s Creek, where he volunteered as a starter and ranger.

In his effort to master the complexity of the game, Jerry acquired a basement full of equipment — particularly putters — and never lost his enthusiasm for playing, watching (on television or in person), reading about or discussing it. Golf provided him many hours of enjoyment and fellowship with both family and friends, old and new. In later years, Jerry battled serious health problems, but he never gave up the idea of returning to the golf course.

He is survived by his wife, Marlene, and son, Matthew, of Circleville; along with aunt, Mildred Ayers; and a number of cousins.

Interment will be at Reber Hill Cemetery, where there will be a graveside service for the family at 12 noon on Friday, May 1.

Arrangements are under the care of Wellman Funeral Home.

Anyone wishing to may make a gift in Jerry’s memory may do so to a charity of their choice.

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