"Sharing can be a way of healing. Grief and loss can isolate,
anger even alienate. Shared with others, emotions unite
as we see we aren't alone. We realize others weep with us."
~Susan Wittig Albert

Through our writing, we walk out of the darkness into the light
together, one small step at a time, recording history, educating
America, and we are healing.
~CJ/Todd Dierdorff

Monday, August 23, 2010


“I am only one, but I am one. I can't do everything, but I can do something. The something I ought to do, I can do. And by the grace of God, I will.” ~Everett Hale

From Coshocton, Ohio
Marine Corps
KIA Vietnam

I still vividly remember the day we saw the Marines arriving at our house with the news that Jerry had been killed in Vietnam. Our family was proud of him when he enlisted. He thought that he could make a difference. He once told our mother that he would rather be over there than to be someone who didn't care. He was unselfish like that.

Being a younger sister, I can remember the many things that Jerry accomplished during his school years. He didn't much like the recognition, as he was on the shy side, but I know he touched many lives from the amount of people who came to his funeral.

I still have the newpaper articles that Coach Bowman and others had written about Jerry, and the note with the marine medals from the Vietnam Memorial on the courtsquare in town.

It doesn't seem like it's been over forty years ago, as I still think of him and what might have been.

Diane (Heskett) Snow

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  1. Very nice piece about your brother Diana.

  2. Comments from the Facebook page:

    Caroline Oceana Ryan
    Amazing, and beautifully done.
    Thank you CJ.

    Linda Casey-Overholt
    He went to school with my brother, Terry. I think they lived near us, too. What a shock. It was so sad losing so many, Including your Doug.

    Jan Hoffman
    I remember this. I also remember weeping in each others arms, Diane, and some of the talks we had. Thanks for sharing.

    Tanya Rachel Sigman
    I saw his name on my only trip to D.C. He was kind, friendly, smart, outgoing, and this only mentions a few things that I saw in him. I knew many who just loved being around him, especially gals from my class of 1969. He had a great smile.

    CJ Heck
    Thank you so much for reading ... and for commenting. Jerry was a very special person.

  3. Jerry was my friend when we were in the 2nd ITR Infantry training in 1966 at Camp Pendleton. I have a picture of our Company hung on my wall, and Jerry is right on the front row. I miss my friend. Semper Fi Bro.

  4. Robin (Heskett) RiceMarch 24, 2011 at 11:00 AM

    I too remember the day the Marines came to the door. I was 12 and Jerry was also my brother. I miss his devilish grin when he would prank us. I remember being so proud of him and so excited when he would come to visit. I remember sending him Chocolate Chip cookies to VietNam. He said the guys would get so excited, but now I know they must have been hard as rocks. lol.
    My father (Jerry's dad)but he too was so proud of him. My dad was a man of few words, but when he spoke you knew to listen. Every conversation he had with anyone he mentioned Jerry being a Marine. My father is a WWII Veteran and a very private proud man...

  5. Your description of Jerry is so true. I know and understand how much you love and miss him -- I remember his devilish grin from study hall at CHS. He never could keep a secret because his face always gave him away. Thank you, Robin, for reading and taking time to comment here. I know Jerry is up there with Doug and they're watching over all of us.
    With love and respect,
    Cathy Kempf Heck

  6. I lived next door to Jerry and his family and was usually found hanging out with Jerry, Dean Caton, and the rest of the guys around our homes. We helped Jerry with his Soap Box Derby Car that won the Coshocton race. We were always up to something in the garage, and Jerry was our leader always egging us on no matter what was up. I remember how sad I was years later after we moved away when I found out he was KIA. I don't know why, but it affected me then, and there is not a year that goes by to this day that some memory of Jerry and the gang at Fourth and Pine don't come up. Jerry was a great guy and a life long memory. I can never thank him enough for that and the service he gave to his country.


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