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A Tribute to Brookfield's Jerry Brosnahan

This is to pay honor to a life cut short too soon. And with a lesson for all, something to leave behind for others in tribute to his memory.

Jerry Brosnahan (born Jeremiah Joseph Patrick) passed away suddenly August 6, 2012, in his home in Brookfield, CT, at the age of 60.

Jerr and I spent the last 10 years of his life together. Even though I live in Canada and he in the USA, he always said we had a closer and better relationship than most married couples already together. When apart, we talked every single day. 

In April 2007, my darling Jerr asked me to marry him and, for the first time in my life, at 55, I knew I had found the man I had always searched for, so happily I said yes. This was on the phone but he promised next time I was there he would buy the ring and go down on his knee, which he did.

As life sometimes does, events happened that we were not able to set a date to plan the wedding — family deaths and illnesses on my side, loss of his job and the depressed housing market on his side. So, as I had for the prior 5 years, I found time to get down to him as often as I could, every time bringing new things for the home or interesting foodstuffs that we can get in Montreal, but not in good old Brookfield. I loved being able to make his life happier in this way and it was always an adventure for us to open up my bags on arrival... he said it was like Christmas all year!

He always said, “Hon, you have turned this house into our home and when you are away, all I have to do is look around and I see you in every room in the home which comforts me until you can come back... I love you more than I have ever loved anyone.”

Jerr was a good, hardworking man, who loved collecting model cars, especially muscle cars. He could tell you when a bumper design, or a light fixture, or anything was changed on a certain car from one year to the next — the only one he could never find was the 1970 Duster. I spent many hours online searching for it for him. He had hundreds of models and “tweaked” each and every one. He did not just collect them, he redid them in his own incredible way... I often told him he could make a living at it. He wanted to donate them to a boys club before moving up to Canada this year to get married

Jerr told me often that he had never felt loved before in his life and that was all he wanted, was to feel loved and happy. Even though he is gone, I can take some comfort in knowing that I was able to show him for 10 years how very much he deserved to be, and was, truly loved.

In tribute to him, I hope all who read this will know him a bit better, mourn the loss of a good man, and learn the lesson to go where your heart takes you… do not hesitate, do not allow anything to interfere with doing what you need to in order to be happy... move mountains if you have to. Life is short and God wills us to be happy. So please, love life, love each other, and be happy.

I will miss you the rest of my life, Jerr.

Your loving fiancée, Cheryl

Michelle August 28, 2012 at 01:41 PM
Your tribute is a beautiful gesture of love, kindness and shared words of spiritedness. He sounds like a fine man. I send you my deepest condolances for your loss and wish you peace.
Tara R. Alemany August 28, 2012 at 03:59 PM
Dear Cheryl, I'm so sorry that you're following along in a journey that began for me a year ago in July. After 12 years of my being alone, and 10 years for him, I finally met the love of my life as well. While he was currently residing in Florida, Frank was a Danbury native and resident. We didn't have nearly enough time together, but in a very short while, we both knew that all we wanted was each other. He proposed, and I accepted. Four short months later, he died unexpectedly. All I can say is, cherish your memories. It is a blessing to me to know that I filled a huge void in Frank's life, as he did in mine, and it sounds like you and Jerr had that same blessing. It doesn't happen for everyone! Know that you're in my thoughts and prayers...
Cheryl Cartwright August 28, 2012 at 11:49 PM
thank yo so much Tara for your kind words. As I said in my tribute, I jsut wish we had moved forward and got married, but I am grateful I was able to show him the love he so yearned for all his life. I will miss him always as I know you do your Frank. How did you find your strength when the whole left is just so huge?
Cheryl Cartwright August 28, 2012 at 11:52 PM
Thank you so much Michelle. My tribute was meant just as you described it, a gesture of love. I hope others will see and understand the need for love in this world....nothing is more precious. Thank you again.
LFerrara August 29, 2012 at 01:19 AM
Thank you so much for sharing your love and life with all of us. I do not know you, but when it comes to issues of the heart, even strangers feel your loss. Be well, and cherish your memories :)
Susan August 30, 2012 at 07:43 PM
Cheryl, I worked with Jerr at United Rentals and shared alot of laughs with him over the years. I am happy that he found someone like you. It makes me happy to know he didn't die without finding the love we all yearn for.
cc September 01, 2012 at 04:13 AM
Dear Susn - thank you so much..my Jerr was a very unique man and I loved hin more than anyone ever i my life.......I so appreciate that you saw the wondeful in him.......my lasting legacy in life will be that I showed him how much he was loved for all my years with him.........
cc September 01, 2012 at 04:15 AM
i love you for your words of comfort and wish we could talk. How di dyou move on?
Cheryl Cartwright September 02, 2012 at 01:23 AM
...it is true that a good and loving heart can "hear" the feelings of others ........thank you for reaching out in my time of such darkness.
caley September 04, 2012 at 12:55 AM
Hello
caley September 04, 2012 at 01:06 AM
I wanted to thank you for such a wonderful memorial. Jerry told me about the time he was caught in the middle of the race riots in the sixties while he was returning home with a gift for his mother. I found hIm to be a deeply introspective man who had a great deal of inner pain. I am sincerely happy that you shared some very special moments with him something he never experienced in marriages where he inherited a lot more than he bargained for and in the end for blamed for trying to do the right thing. But nobody gets a free pass in life and those who hurt others will one day experience the same pain. My sincerest condolences and thanks for such a wonderful tribute
Cheryl Cartwright September 04, 2012 at 02:11 AM
thank you so much for sharing..yes he had much inner pain which I tried to absolve him from over the years....In our time together he greatly changed, became more mellow, more happy with life, so I am grateful for that.....wish he could have finally made the move up here to Canada and be surrounded by his "adoptive" family, my great nieces and nephews, whom he know over the phone and talked to often and whose pictures covered the entire front of his refrigerator......but he instead is "up there" and I know I will find him again one day....God bless for your sharing
kellie October 02, 2012 at 06:11 PM
Apparently some of us have very different memories of Jerry.
caley October 03, 2012 at 02:40 AM
May be Kellie but MOST who knew Jerry had the same opinion of you...what a pitiful person you are!

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