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Did you every wonder what happens in the background to makes things happen in the Council and Assembly?  This writer has been working with lots and lots of knights since our Council was formed in the late 1990’s.  I take pictures and keep an ear alert for a story to share.  This is one of those stories–The Legacy of Jerry Pilarski.

Gene Keeling and Jerry Pilarski

We join the Fourth Degree to show our patriotism, but we gain camaraderie and fellowship.  We bond together as brothers.  How do we do that?  We gather to have fun and help each other.

One example is Sir Knight Jerry Pilarski.  There is no task that he would not take on.  The word “can’t” does not seem to be in his vocabulary.  This writer can remember many a meeting where Jerry would stand up and say, “…. then I’ll get it done.”

I think it has something to do with his airborne and army medic training. You can’t be a paratrooper with doubt on your mind.  You are jumping out of planes that were made by the low bidder, as was your parachute.  You are responding to a “Go!”-light and command that will take you into flight out of your control.  You are in God’s hands as the wind carries you out and gently guides you to the ground.  Where you land is often not as planned.

And, I can not think of any instance where a combat medic looked out and down and then toward the trusting face of a helpless warrior and said, “…. I can’t ….”

Where there is life, there is hope.”  Jerry is forever young at 92!

Jerry has been our council’s pig cooker, Lamb champion, parish greeter, friend, pancake cooker, fish monger, and so much more.  He is helpful, caring, and consistent.  Every year for over 50 years he has gathered with family and friends to celebrate the New Year with a family-style pig picking.  Everyone brings a covered dish or a dessert.  Jerry and his family does the rest.  Yes, that’s right, Jerry has been welcoming brother knights, friends, and family to a New Year’s Day pig pickin’ for a long, long time.

I remember well more than 25 years ago.  I was warming my favorite chair when the telephone rang.  “Hey, Lee!  It’s Jerry.  Where in the …. are you?  We are going to be eating soon and you ain’t here.”  It was my first invitation and Jerry took invites real seriously.  I gathered my family and we headed to the 4H Cattle Barn.  The Barn was packed and the parking lot was full.  We were treated as family at a family reunion.  In fact, it may have been the day that Jerry asked me to say grace the first time.  He introduced me as, “Preacher Lee.”  He still does.  We have not missed an event since–we are family.

Why not join Jerry this year?  Turn off your television, put up your phone.  There is more to do than drink beer, eat chips and watch a game.  You can see the highlights later.  Head to Orange Grove Church Road and Jerry’s New Year’s Day pig picking.  All Knights have a standing invitation. Join other knights to share God’s blessings and a plate of your family favorite dish.  Learn more and get directions.