Christian 21

Dr. Jerome "Jerry" Lawson

July 14, 1943 ~ February 28, 2024 (age 80) 80 Years Old


Jerome “Jerry” Lawson, 80, of Glen Rock NJ, passed away peacefully on Wednesday, February 28th, 2024, surrounded by friends and family. Jerry was born in Monmouth, IL to Clyde John Lawson and Dorothy Marie Ryan on July 14th, 1943.

As a child, Jerry and his family enjoyed boating on the Mississippi River in a series of boats built from kits by his father, including a Chris Craft 18-foot cruiser and a Lone Star 21-foot cruiser. Jerry was more athletic than he let on, and was a fast runner and able to hold his breath underwater for an abnormal length of time. In grade school, Jerry acquired his General Class ham radio license and spent time tinkering and experimenting, including stringing a working telegraph wire to a neighboring boy’s house.

In college, Jerry roomed with his twin brother Denny and turned his attention to the study of physics and math. He became proficient in German to support his scientific studies. Jerry was a 1965 graduate of Saint Ambrose University, receiving his Bachelor’s of Science in Physics. He received his PhD in Physics in 1975 from the University of Notre Dame and taught at Wayne State University.

After leaving academia and moving to New Jersey, Jerry transitioned to working as an engineer in 1980. He was employed at ITT Avionics (later acquired by L3HARRIS). When the iconic “ITT Tower” of Nutley NJ, used for microwave communications research, was demolished in 1996, Jerry was impressed by the historical significance and took many photos. He retired in 2014 as Principal Member of Technical Staff, Software Engineer, leaving a legacy of accomplishments in the electronic countermeasures (ECM) community.

Jerry met his wife-to-be Haruno Tanishita in New York City through their shared attendance at Our Lady of the Roses Shrine. They were married June 23, 1979 and lived most of their married life of forty-four years in Fair Lawn, NJ and Glen Rock, NJ. Haruno passed away on August 1st, 2023 after a brief illness.

Jerry had a deep interest in genealogy, constructing family trees and putting together the puzzle pieces of ancestral connections using archived newspapers, cemetery records, and public records searches. Jerry also spent much of his time supporting Haruno in the cultivation of a large and prosperous fruit and vegetable garden in their Glen Rock, NJ backyard.

Jerry was a parishioner of Our Lady of Fatima Chapel in Pequannock, NJ for twenty-five years and a long-time member of the Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration group at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church in Ridgewood, NJ.

Jerry is survived by his daughter, Marie Lawson (Sarah Lifsey) of Mount Rainier, MD, his fraternal twin John Dennis “Denny” (Kay) Lawson, and his brothers Timothy Patrick “Tim” (Sherry) Lawson and Anthony “Tony” (Tina) Lawson, along with their families. He is also survived by his cousins Andrea “Andy” Jones, Francine Micklewright, and many other cousins, nieces, and nephews, as well as his brother-in-law Kazuo Tanishita and sister-in-law Kiyoko Fujita in Japan. He was able to visit his family in Iowa and Illinois a final time in September 2023 for the joyous occasion of his niece Molly Anderson’s wedding to Sean Donaldson.

Visitation will be at Feeney Funeral Home in Ridgewood, NJ on Sunday, March 10th from 2:00 to 5:00pm ET. The Mass of Christian Burial will be at Our Lady of Fatima Chapel in Pequannock Township, NJ on Monday, March 11th at 10:30am ET. Interment will follow at Maryrest Cemetery in Mahwah, NJ.

In lieu of flowers, donations could be made to the Community Food Bank of New Jersey (CFBNJ) or your favorite charity.

The Mass of Christian Burial will be livestreamed. Please see below.


March 10, 2024

2:00 PM to 5:00 PM
Feeney Funeral Home
232 Franklin Avenue
Ridgewood, NJ 07450

March 11, 2024

10:30 AM
Our Lady of Fatima Chapel
32 W Franklin Ave
Pequannock Township, NJ 07440


Maryrest Cemetery
770 Darlington Ave.
Mahwah, NJ 07430


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