Jerry Wayne Fincher was born into humble beginnings. On June 17th, 1935, Jerry was the second of five children, born to the late William Richard and Effie Elizabeth Fincher.
Jerry was a beloved husband, a wonderful father, a proud grandfather, and a faithful friend. His life, even from the beginning, was filled with struggles and hardships. Each of which were met with integrity, fortitude, and a relentless determination that would inspire all who knew him.
Jerry was born with a foot condition that required several surgeries to repair. Due to his limited mobility between surgeries, the guitar became his trusted friend and thus began his love for music. As he began to learn to play, those who were close to him would say he was pecking away at the guitar. What began as simply pecking on a guitar, soon would soon earn him the nickname “Peck” It would also be a prelude to a lifetime of bringing smiles to peoples faces, and friendships that would last a lifetime, all birthed from a common love of music.
Jerry was raised on the family farm on the Indian Mound Road. As with most farms in the 1930’s, it included a lot of hard work, and produced an education on the importance of his commitment to God, and to his family. This continued all the way into his teen years. He made friendships during this time that were so strong, that they lasted for over 70 years. Jerry was raise with christian values, and a strong character. Some of his most attractive traits, were his quick wit, good heart and mischievous nature. He was always quick with a joke and a smile. Whether you just met him or were a trusted friend, He had the ability to make everyone around him feel safe.
After High school, Jerry went to college and received an Associate degree in Business. Not long after, he began his career in the trucking industry. This led him to South Carolina where he began working on his first freight terminal. He quickly rose through the ranks and joined the team of upper management. He had a passion for the trucking industry and it reflected in his work. His horizons broadened and grew into larger managerial positions within larger companies. It was during these years, that he settled down to have a family. He had two children. The oldest, was his daughter, Cindy Fincher Jacobs, and a younger son, Tommy Fincher. Although Jerry was doing very well in the industry, he had always felt the pull to return home to the farm and his family.
He made the decision to return to North Carolina. Shortly after returning home, he bought a house and expounded on his business background to begin a career in sales. He started with cars, but quickly incorporated his trucking back ground and began his career with Crook Motor Company, in his hometown of Albemarle. Once again he rose through the ranks. Starting off as a salesman, then to Sales Manager, and finally to Vice President of the company. Jerry did incredibly well with Crook Motor company, however, he had always had an entrepreneurial spirit and a passion to try new things. His brothers were cut of the same cloth, and many business ventures are accredited to the dreams they accomplished together. One common denominator that Jerry and his brothers had was building houses. Each of the brothers had their own style and flare, but all were master craftsmen who created dream homes that still stand strong to this day.
Jerry started a pressure washing company in 1985 that he ran for many years before passing it on to his son, Tommy. During this same time he opened a car lot in Norwood, continuing in his passion of sales and automobiles.
As if all this weren’t enough to occupy his time, he never lost two of his greatest passions; the love of his Lord, and his love for music. Sometime around 40 years ago, a group of those life long friends got together and formed a gospel group. They all had a love for the Lord and a love of singing together. They called themselves, “The Lamplighters”. At the time, none of them could have foreseen just how far they would go together, spreading the gospel, and just how many peoples lives they would touch along the way. Over the years they have spread hope and encouragement through song. They forged friendships and made memories that would last a lifetime. They recorded multiple albums and played countless concerts and brought out the very best in people where ever they went.
Jerry held many positions in life, but the one he held at his highest regard was that of Grandpa. His daughter, Cindy, gave him his first grandson, Trey Whitson. You would be hard pressed to see a bigger smile or a prouder look on Jerry’s face, than when he was holding his grandson in his arms. With all the title’s that he held in life, Paw Peck was among his favorites.
It was the simple things in life that appealed to Jerry. His heart never really left the farm. During all his ventures, and places he made home, he would always reflect his years on the farm. He loved to garden and would often share the stories of how his dad had taught him so many life lessons, while working along side of him in the garden. He loved things relating to the country such as old barns, anything with mules, and wholesome time spend with family sharing the simple things in life. Jerry never strayed too far from his roots as a cattleman and managed many herds over the course of his life. It was an enjoyment his daddy had instilled in him at a very early age.
As the years passed by, his fondness for the simple things grew. He loved to watch the sunrise. He was always up early before the break of dawn and did more by 8am, than most people would do all day. He LOVED children. Nothing quite made his face light up and glow quite like the smile and laughter of children.
With all this, it would be fair to say that Jerry lived a very blessed life, and that would be true. But one of the greatest blessings of his life was when he met the love of his life. Her name was Ms. Eleanor Kate Holden. When Kate came into his life, his world stopped on a dime. A love story was birthed that would change his life forever. After a life time of searching, he finally found who he was searching for that would love him unconditionally. The love that they share not only changed their lives but it changed the lives of everyone who was close to them. It’s such a beautiful modern day love story. Kate brought out the best in Jerry, and in turn, Jerry brought out the best in Kate. They both understood how special their love was and neither ever took it for granted. Their life together would span almost 14 years. Their time together was filled with so many wonderful stories, and memories and simple pleasures.
One of their favorite pastimes was taking weekend trips and going up to the mountain house. Stories of crisp, clear, mountain mornings, watching the sun rise up over the mountains were always a favorite to share. Trips they would take to the Amish Country together with friends. Times spent together in church and enjoying the simple pleasures in life. Sometimes some of the best times were just the times they would sit for hours, enjoying each others company while watching all of their favorite birds, play on the feeders outside the window. Working in the garden together, all the while, having to stop and throw the ball for their dog, “Bo”, their trusty sidekick. All of this wasn’t without it’s challenges though. Things weren’t always so easy.
When they made their vows to each other, neither could have know just how much their vows would be put to the test. Both Kate and Jerry suffered through incredible sickness that would threaten their very life. But even through the sicknesses, and all the uncertainties all the sleepless nights praying for one another, they never lost sight of just how much they loved each other. They never questioned how far they were willing to go to take care of one another. They fought through every obstacle, every uncertainty, every sickness, just to be able to hold one another again and tell each other just how much they love one another. Their life together would epitomize the vow they made that said, “In sickness and in health”. They never let go of this commitment to one another, even until Jerry’s last breath. Jerry Fincher lived a beautiful and Blessed life. He lived a life that was worth living.
Jerry Fincher passed from this life on April 3, 2020 at 8:05 pm. He was surrounded by his family and holding the hand of the love of his life. Jerry is preceded in death by three siblings, two brothers, Billy Gilbert Fincher, and Larry Richard Fincher, and one sister, Barbra Joyce Moore.
He is survived by his wife, Eleanor Kate Fincher of the home, daughter, Cindy Fincher Jacobs of Wingate NC., son and daughter in law, Tommy (Tiffany) Fincher of New London NC., Step Children, Jimmy (Lisa) Lanier of Locust NC, Wanda (Bob) Krimminger of Locust NC., Eric (Sharon) Lanier of Charlotte NC., Grandchildren-Trey (Gera) Whitson of Midland, Step-grandchildren, Zach (Brittney) Washington, Aaron (Kinsey) Washington, Caleb (Nayeli) Washington, Beth (Robbie) Setzer, Matthew ( April ) Wallace, Step great-grandchildren, Britlyn-Eve Washington, Robert Setzer, George (Sara) Setzer, Tracy (Rob) Setzer Bumgardener, Katie Underwood, Andrew Underwood, Step great great grandchild, Waylon George Setzer and brother Donald Lewis Fincher of Albemarle, NC.
Jerry Fincher will be laid to rest on Wednesday April 8,2020 at 11:00 am at Canton Baptist Church. Anyone interested in attending, please RSVP at 704-796-2412. Dr. Phil McCray and Pastor Tommy Fincher will officiate.
We would like to thank everyone for all the kind thoughts, the prayers, the cards, the meals, all the caregivers, and hospital staff for taking care of our dad during this time. We appreciate every kindness shown.