John R. Gerian

March 12, 2024

John R Gerian, age 71, died March 11, 2024 with his wife Kathy, son Charles and nephew Rudy by his side, after a long illness.

John was born in Tulsa, to Frankie Smith Gerian and Charles Gerian on 7/8/1952. John's family moved to Norfolk, Virginia when he was in his early teens, where he lived until he enlisted in the United States Marines in 1971. John attended Lake Taylor High School, most of the time, as he hated school and had too much fun skipping school with his friends. He met his future wife Kathy in 1969 and they eventually got married in 1992.

John served in the Marines for 21 years and loved every minute of it. He was briefly in Vietnam in 1971- 1972 and was stationed in several states, including Virginia, Oklahoma, New Jersey, Nevada, California and Hawaii with many overseas tours. His Marines were sent to the Philippines in 1991 when a large earthquake hit and destroyed- John and his men worked valiantly and courageously to assist with the relief efforts. His Marines were then sent to Kuwait, to be ready for President Bush to give them the go-ahead on the commencement of Operation Desert Storm.

John said he knew at an early age, he wanted to be a Marine and he worked very hard to be the best. He took advantage of every school offered and he quickly advanced to his final rank as Sgt Major which he was extremely proud of. He loved his “Pigs” (his Marines) and they all loved him with many reaching out in the years that John was sick to wish him well from all corners of the globe.

John received the Bronze Star for his courage and leadership in Desert Storm. He retired in 1991 and returned to live in Norfolk. His pride and joy, Charles David was born in 1993, and that one event changed his life. John was the perfect Dad, always being there for Charlie. They loved to go to the movies together, and always made time for a weekly breakfast at one of the many local diners in Norfolk and later Oklahoma.

In 2002, John and Kathy decided to move to Oklahoma so Charlie could grow up in a safer environment and they chose Blackwell. Within a year of moving to Blackwell, he was hired as the part time Animal Control Officer and later the full time Officer.

He loved working for the Blackwell Police Department and the City of Blackwell, making many good friends. He developed a reputation of being a fair person but tough as nails when needed.

He had a way with dogs and was often called out late at night to go into a house to retrieve the vicious dog before the police could enter, which he would calmly walk out with and “load it up” without incident. He earned the nickname of “dog whisperer” because of his ability to take control of scared animals. He learned however just how mean and heartless people were when it came to their pets, and John always sought to give the pets a better life than they had when he had found them.

He brought home several dogs and cats, plus numerous other animals that needed some place to live until he could find permanent homes or until the Wildlife Rescue could come get them. John loved every animal and felt they all deserved a fair chance to live their best lives.

John is survived by his wife Kathy and son Charles of the home and nephew, Rudy (MaKayla) of Muskogee, his sister Diane Martin and nephew, John (Amanda) Tolson of Chesapeake, Virginia, nephews Carl and Geoff (Dana) Gerian of Tulsa and daughter Dr. Jessica (Avery) Sigle of Stillwater, plus a childhood friend, Karen Williamson of Tulsa.

He was predeceased by his parents, older brothers, Philip Rankin and Charles E Gerian, older sister, Edwina Miller, and nephew Matthew Tolson plus many other relatives and friends.

A special thanks and heartfelt appreciation to Dr. Briggs and his nurse Michelle, Dr. Kruska and his very special nurse and friend Erica, and the nurses and doctors at the OSU Medical Center in Tulsa.

Visitation will be on Friday evening from 5-7 pm at Roberts & Sons. Graveside Service will be Saturday at 1 pm in Blackwell Cemetery