Gerald (“Jerry”) J. Karas died Monday, July 27, at the Pound Ridge home that he and his sons built over 50 years ago. He was 93.
A graveside service will be held at the Pound Ridge Cemetery at 2 p.m. today, Friday, July 31.
He was born in Queens in 1926. He spent his childhood with his mother, Margaret, in Queens, and his father, Michael, in Tarrytown. In 1942, with World War II underway, he attempted to enlist in the Army at age 16. His mother marched down to the enlistment center and made it clear her son was underage and did not have her approval to sign up. However, a year later, she consented to his joining the Navy at 17. He completed training as a naval electrician and served on the USS Kitty Hawk aircraft carrier in the Pacific. He completed his wartime duty as a petty officer second class.
Towards the end of the war, while at home on leave, he met his future wife, Doris Erath, at a USO canteen event. They delayed their wedding until he completed active duty, and were married in 1947.
After the war, he worked briefly as an electrician in the Brooklyn Navy Yard, then as the chief maintenance electrician at Coney Island Hospital. He also worked for the electrician’s union as an instructor in the union’s apprentice program. That experience led him to decide to go to college to acquire teaching credentials so he could become a vocational high school teacher. Over his career, he helped many young people become electricians. Later in his career he completed his college degree and became an assistant principal at J. M. Wright Technical High School in Stamford, Connecticut, from which he ultimately retired.
He was a member of the Pound Ridge Volunteer Fire Department and also served as fire inspector.
In his later years, his family recalled, he enjoyed going for car rides with his wife, and could often be seen plowing the driveway with his snowblower, cutting his lawn, starting the home generator to restore power when the lights went out, and, when his wife wasn’t looking, climbing onto the roof to clean and repair gutters.
Survivors include his wife of 72 years, Doris, and three children, Ken (Katie) of Santa Ynez, California, Keith (Patty) of Clarksville, Maryland, and Kristen Woll (David) of Irvington; eight grandchildren and two great-children.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be sent to Pound Ridge Volunteer Ambulance Corps. PO Box 237, Pound Ridge, NY 10576 or visit PRVAC.org for online donations.