We mourn the world's loss of Gerald Marvin Feis, who died on January 8, 2024. He was born on April 2, 1947 in Hastings, Nebraska, the youngest of Marvin J. and Ella Mae Feis' four children.
While still a small boy, he moved with his family to Colorado Springs' west side where he attended primary and secondary school, graduating from Palmer High with the class of 1965. Though he did attend some college, rather than completing a degree he eloped with Patricia Cook -- whom he had known through her brother George since junior high -- to Santa Fe where the couple were married before returning to the Springs. There they resided and had a son in 1971. Aside from some time in the 1970s living in Albuquerque and Dallas -- where the couple had a daughter in 1976 – Jerry would live the rest of his life out in Colorado Springs. Though Jerry and Pat divorced in the early eighties, they remained close friends until his death.
Professionally, Jerry’s career wound through several different industries. Though for many years he was a roofing inspector for American Roofing Consultants, much of his working life was spent in retail, including employment at Shewmaker's Camera Shop, The Ski Haus, and the Mountain Chalet. The last few decades of his life were spent as assistant manager at Cameraworks, starting the day they opened in 1992. Even after his retirement, Jerry would regularly work here until November of 2023.
In 2004, immediately following the death of his father, Jerry himself twice came close to death. With the initial crisis, he chose to stop drinking, which had been a life-long and daily avocation. Coming out of the hospital, he never drank again; but, instead devoted himself to exercise. Through these efforts and other life changes, he was able to live an additional twenty years in promising health, up until the end of 2023.
Jerry was physically active throughout life, and along with working out regularly, the many activities he was seriously involved in over the years included rock and ice climbing, bicycling, hiking, skiing, karate, yoga, and golf. As much as anything else, Jerry loved spending time in nature, and as an avid and gifted photographer he immortalized many beautiful landscapes and details found on his travels. His portraits as well are perceptive and revealing, dear to their subjects and their loved ones.
Graced with a wonderful and near-constant sense of humor -- though sometimes so subtle or obscure or with a delivery so deadpan that it could take a moment to catch the joke, if one ever caught it -- he loved to make other people laugh. Though loved for his humor, Jerry is most remembered for his kind and loving heart, his generosity, and his willingness to help others whether assisting with a move, bringing flowers to make someone smile, visiting a sick friend, providing a shoulder to cry on, or telling a good joke to lighten the day.
In the wake of his passing, Jerry leaves three sisters -- Kathleen Smith, Janice Mathewson, and Jean Ann Lynch; two children – Jessica Howard Karr and Nathaniel Feis; a nephew and four nieces; numerous cousins and other relatives; so many good and close friends, many of these friendships going back to his earliest days in Colorado; and his beloved German Sheperd friend and companion, Thor. He leaves a gaping hole in this world and in the lives of so many; it is a starkly altered community and world without him. He will be greatly missed and remembered.
There will be a life celebration on Sunday, April 7 in Manitou Springs. For detailed information, please email email@example.com.
In lieu of flowers, please donate in his name to Trails & Open Space Coalition (https://www.trailsandopenspaces.org/) and/or White Bison (https://whitebison.org/).