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Memorial for Jerome Alan Winestone

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Where to contribute: Coral Reef Alliance or Ocean Conservancy

Jerome (Jerry) Winestone, 73, passed away on Thursday, April 18, 2024, in Oakland, California. He was born in September 1950 in Cedar Rapids, Iowa to Robert and Mildred Winestone. Jerry grew up in Wichita, Kansas, Pacific Palisades, California, and Bethesda, Maryland. He graduated from Walt Whitman High School. Then he attended the University of Maryland in College Park where he majored in philosophy, dabbled in astronomy, and explored his passion for marine biology.

Jerry worked for over 30 years in information technology as a programmer, systems analyst, project manager, and consultant. Much of his career was with Unisys (previously Sperry, Univac and Burroughs). He enjoyed his last working years with Booz Allen converting legacy systems. Jerry was a loving and devoted dad. He reveled in every Girl Scout camping expedition, relished handstand contests, and his booming cheers echoed across soccer fields.

Jerry hitchhiked back to California every summer for several years as a teenager in the late 60's. It remained in his heart as a place of liberation and freedom. On the East Coast, Jerry fell in love with the Florida Keys where almost every summer was spent snorkeling and scuba diving. He collected tropical fish, which he transported by car and then plane back to his marine aquarium complex in the house in Bethesda. Eventually, he cultivated coral in his fish tanks as well. His scuba diving took him from Florida to the Caribbean to the Great Barrier Reef to the Red Sea and the Indian Ocean. He was a master storyteller: his tales of underwater escapades and the infamous bear attack captivated listeners.

Jerry survived emergency surgery for an aortic aneurysm in 2009 and then a massive stroke 5 years later. When aphasia took his words, he still found ways to communicate. He was friends with the whole world before and after his brain hemorrhage. His tenacity was unmatched, relearning to write, eat, and walk-each step a testament to his unwavering resolve. Jerry's zest for life was only paralleled by his love for his grandchildren. He was a doting and proud grandfather, who his grandkids can attest gave the absolute best hugs.

Jerry is survived by his wife, Jamie of Ramrod Key, Florida; his daughter Lena Winestone and son-in-law Andreas Rauschecker of Mill Valley, California; his daughter Rachael and son-in-law Bobby Jameson of Vista, California; and grandchildren Emilia and Max Rauschecker and Lucy and Casey Jameson; and his brother, Lee Winestone and family in Bethesda, Maryland.