Gerard J. Levesque , a former U.S. diplomat who served in eight countries during his 30-year career including China where he was an aide to former President George H.W. Bush died Thursday, Oct. 6, 2016, after a brief illness. He was 94. Jerry, a native of Lawrence, Mass., and a lifelong Boston Red Sox fan, was the son of a shoe salesman and a homemaker. He embarked on a life-long career in the Foreign Service in 1950, joining the U.S. State Department in Washington, D.C., shortly after graduation from Boston University. He served in the Army Air Corps during World War II in the Pacific Theater, including postings in Japan, Gusap, New Guinea and the Lingayen Gulf, Luzon in the Philippines, a key invasion point in the Japanese plan for conquest of the Philippines. After being drafted into the Army in 1943, Jerry said he soon recognized that the discipline imposed by the Army was nothing compared to the training he had received as a seminarian. Jerry had entered Maryvale, a Marist Seminary in Bedford, Mass., in 1936 and studied for the priesthood throughout high school and his first year of college. But after discernment, he decided he did not have a calling to become a priest but remained a devout Catholic his entire life. Jerry had a distinguished career in the Foreign Service but he said it took him months to persuade the State Department to hire him, a recent University graduate without any real work experience. He started as an administrative assistant in Dakar, Senegal in West Africa, where his fluency in French came in handy. Senegal was followed by posts in Marseille, France; Vietnam; Laos; Guinea; Vienna, Austria; Port-au-Prince, Haiti; and Peking, China. His last overseas assignment, and one of his favorites, was as administrative officer for Bush, who was then U.S. Ambassador to China. Jerry retired in 1977 following a second tour of duty at the U.S. State Department in Washington, D.C. He and his wife, Mary Jane Goekel, who were married in 1961, then moved to Sun City West, Ariz. She died in 1998 from cancer. At the time of his death, Jerry lived in Greensburg with his second wife, Mary Kay (Hubert), after moving there with her from Sun City West in 2008. Jerry and Mary Kay enjoyed family and travel, including cruises to Hawaii, Alaska, Panama and a sail on the majestic Queen Anne II to Africa, Spain and Portugal. They were married for 17 years and were deeply devoted to each other. He was preceded in death by his mother, Alexina Gallant Levesque; his father, Arthur J. Levesque; a sister, Therese Levesque; his first wife, Jane Gockel Levesque; and his brother-in-law, Brendon (Darby) Crowe. In addition to his wife, Gerry is survived by his sister, Gertrude (Trudy) Crowe; nephew, Tim Crowe and wife, Nancy; their children, Meagan and Ryan Crowe; niece, Brenda Crow Dobbert and her daughter, Katlyn Dobbert; Mary Kay's children, Maralynne Kubic and husband, Robert, Sandra Ross and husband, Richard, Brian Hoffman and wife, Cheryl, and Curtis Hoffman; her grandchildren, Amy Hall, Brent Ross and wife, Stacey, Lindsay Kozar and husband, Nicholas, and Andrew Ross; her great-grandchildren, Zachary Hall, Brody Ross, Iyla Rose and Cameron Kozar; and Gerry's brother- in-law , Nicholas Drew Hubert and his wife, Patricia. Relatives and friends are invited to celebrate the life of Jerry from 4 to 8 p.m. Sunday in the CLEMENT L. PANTALONE FUNERAL HOME INC., 409 W. Pittsburgh St., Greensburg, PA 15601, 724-837-0020. Parting prayers will be held at 9:15 a.m. Monday in the funeral home, followed by a funeral Mass to be celebrated at 10 a.m. in the St. Bruno Church, South Greensburg. Inurnment will be private. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Christian Layman Corp., 258 E. Pittsburgh St., Greensburg, PA 15601. Jerry's family has entrusted his care to the Pantalone Funeral Home Inc., Greensburg. To share your memories and photos, offer your condolences or for directions, please visit us at www.pantalone.com. Natale N. Pantalone, supervisor.
Christian Layman Corp.
258 E. Pittsburgh St., Greensburg PA 15601