Jerauld DaPron Way, charter captain and long-time resident of Sanibel, died on Feb. 20, 2011 from complications due to lung cancer. He was 73.
Born in Virginia, Minn. in 1938 to William and Muriel Way, Jerry served as a paratrooper with the 501st chapter of the 82nd Airborne Division of the U.S. Army. He moved with his family to Sanibel, where he had lived ever since, in the early 1950s. He was a fishing charter captain on the islands, operating out of Captiva’s ’Tween Waters Marina for more than 40 years.
Jerry was the oldest active fishing guide on Sanibel and Captiva, and was much-respected and celebrated for his love and knowledge of fishing on the islands. An avid sportsman and hunter who dearly loved the forests of his native Minnesota, where he enjoyed hunting pheasant, grouse and quail, Jerry also enjoyed woodworking, metalworking, crafting batches of his much-loved salsa, and collecting and restoring antiques. He was a huge University of Florida Gators fan, and loved watching UF football and basketball. He was an eclectic arts lover as well, enjoying everything from history to classic American movies, Buddy Holly and opera.
Jerry is survived by and will be forever remembered by his son, Christopher Andres Way, of New York, N.Y., and daughter, Melissa Way Cooper, of North Fort Myers (both children of Jerry and Yleana Way); his daughter, Debbie Cranford, of Fort Myers (daughter of Jerry and Linda Horne); his brother, Chadwick Coates Way of Cincinnati, Ohio, his sister Victoria Reich of Inverness, Fla.; his wife Yleana Rosado Way of Sanibel; eight grandchildren — Sophia Cooper, Isabel Cooper, Georg Koszulinski, Chelsea Cranford, Courtney Cranford, Larry Casey, Bradley Blaufuss, Tyler Noon; and a great-grandchild, Anna Reneé Koszulinski, in addition to numerous extended family members and friends.
Jerry was predeceased by his mother, Muriel Schultz Way, his father William Adelbert Way, and a daughter, Stacey Noon.
The family requests that donations be made in Jerry’s memory to the Ruffed Grouse Society (a wildlife preservation charity Jerry loved) at www.ruffedgrousesociety.org/RUFF and/or the Sanibel-Captiva American Legion at www.legion.org/donate/american_legion_charities.
A vintage image of Jerry Way during his days as a fishing charter captain on the islands.