Obituaries


Obituaries

Gerald M. Bronko

1955-2020

Gerald M. Bronko, 64, passed away March 26, 2020. Gerald was born in Akron, Ohio on April 1, 1955, and graduated from Cuyahoga Falls High School in 1975. An accomplished musician, he served as organist and organ technician for various religious institutions, theaters, and private residences across Northeast Ohio. Most recently, he served as Director of Music and organist for Remsen Christian Church in Medina, where he directed the choir and coordinated special music and community outreach concerts. He was also organist for the Akron Civic Theater for over 20 years, where he played the "Mighty Wurlitzer" for countless shows and productions, and also gave tours. As a technician, Jerry was frequently called upon to care for some of Northeast Ohio's most historic keyboard instruments. His musical legacy lives on through many former private students and friends.

His hobbies included model railroading, old phonographs, record players, vintage vacuum cleaners, antique reed organs, collecting theater organs...in every room of his house, and helping friends and family with any project or task, which was often paid back by a good meal...or two...or three. Jerry was fondly remembered for his low booming voice, endless quotable quirks, sayings, and mannerisms. His circle would describe him as a lovable and selfless gentle giant who never missed an opportunity to convey the love of his faith through service and music.

An active member of such organizations as the American Guild of Organists, Western Reserve Theater Organ Society, and Akron Civic Theater Wurlitzer curation board, Jerry earned numerous awards for volunteering and dedicated years of service. Specifically, he was frequently honored for standing at the forefront of major design, renovation, and preservation projects.

Jerry was preceded in death by his parents, Gerald D. Bronko and Jean M. Bronko (nee Haus). He is survived by his brother Ted (Nancy Milford); counsin, Michael (Janice) Bronko; Durnan cousins, James, David (Sue), John (Janet) and Mary Beth, Robert (Robin)Hefner, Kathy (Denny) Cole (nee Haus) and all of their families; best friends-in-music and "adopted sons," Chad Pittman and Brandon Casto, and his beloved cats, Anton, Timothy and Casey.

The family wishes to thank Crossroads Hospice (you rock!), and caregivers: Bobby, C.J., Gail, Rose, Tessa, Evelyn and Visiting Angels.

A private graveside service for the family was held at Northlawn Memorial Gardens. A musical celebration of Jerry's life will be announced at a later date to be held at First United Methodist Church of Cuyahoga Falls. Memorial donations, if desired, may be made to the Remsen Christian Church organ fund, or the Summit County Humane Society. Arrangements have been entrusted to Clifford-Shoemaker Funeral Home, and condolences may be shared with the family at www.CliffordShoemaker.com. (CFNP, 4/5/20)