Jerry Suhn, 74, of Pierre died at his home surrounded by family on Thursday, September 8th. A visitation will be held on Friday, September 16th at St. John’s Catholic Church in Ft. Pierre from 5:00-7:00pm with a prayer service starting at 7:00pm. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11:00am on Saturday, September 17th at St. John’s Catholic Church in Ft. Pierre. All services are Central Standard Time. For those unable to attend the services they will be live streamed on his obituary page at www.isburgfuneralchapels.com.
Ernest Jerome "Jerry" Suhn was born on September 8, 1948, to Ernest Jerome Jr. and Loretta Mae (Werdel) Suhn in Pierre, SD. He grew up between Highmore and Ree Heights, SD, on a Jennings Ranch where the family lived and worked. Jerry and his brothers Vern & Dale learned the ins and outs of Cowboying and Raising Cattle. He worked with a few Cowboys that still to this day he looked up too. Jerry enjoyed all aspects of the cowboy way of life he worked hard helping with the cattle and horses on the ranch. He was able to participate in high school football, basketball, and track he enjoyed all sports. He rodeoed in High School, and in 1965 went made SD state finals in the bull riding, saddle broncs, and steer wrestling. In 1966 he won 2nd in the bull riding at which earned him a trip to the NHSRA in Oklahoma. After high school rodeo Jerry went to SDRA rodeo’s where he won a saddle in 1968 for Steer Wrestling. From High school he went on to college for a short stent, after convincing his mother college was not for him, he rodeoed and traveled some and worked in Arizona for some time before returning to Highmore where he went back to work as a cowboy for the Jennings, and other ranches around Highmore. He enjoyed the cattle work, and the cowboys he was able to work with, he could tell you numerous stories on the large number of cattle they moved and the many miles they rode.
In 1969 he married Barbara Rinehart of Highmore, they have four children Justin, Todd, Randy, and Jerrian. All the kids grew up helping with the ranch work and riding many horses alongside their dad. In 1984 the oldest son Justin suffered a severe head injury while working with Jerry’s Brother, Dale at the Hyland Angus Ranch.
In 1986 the family moved to Ogallala, NE to provide a better life for their son Justin. It is then when Jerry went to work as a cowboy for Haythorn Land & Cattle, located North of Ogallala. Jerry worked with a group of Cowboys there that are still some of his favorites to this day. When he had time off he would go to Abilene, TX, with his coworkers to participate in ranch rodeos for Haythorns. In 1988, Craig Haythorn asked Jerry to manage the Buckhorn Springs Ranch, east of Keystone, NE. Here he enjoyed the opportunity to work with the draft horses and teams that he used to put up hay in the summer and feed the cattle in the winter. Jerry spent a lot of time calving and starting colts while at Keystone. It is here on this ranch where he helped his kids start their rodeo careers.
Jerry was well respected and had many long-lasting friendships in the cattle and horse world. One of Jerry’s horses was voted steer wrestling horse of the year in the PRCA.
Jerry moved to Hershey NE, managed a background lot and ranch for the U-Cross Ranch. He worked hard and enjoyed the high school rodeos with his kids from 1987 -1997. He helped many kids get started rodeoing and served a state director. He enjoyed going and watching high school and college rodeos as much as he could. He wasn’t one to let the grass grow under his wheels. Todd & Randy both went on to succeed in the PRCA which made him very proud that they were able to make a career for many years doing what they loved.
Jerry married Sharon (West) Kindopp in December of 2005, after a 13 year courtship, and added her four children: James, Justin, Sara and Amber. Jerry & Sharon lived in Hershey at the U Cross until they moved to Maywood, NE in 2007 where he semiretired and they purchased a small acreage. He helped a neighbor part time at a small feedlot and cattle operation and also ran a few cattle of his own. In 2017, Jerry & Sharon retired and moved north of Pierre, SD. Jerry enjoyed purchasing cattle for friends and clients.
Jerry and Sharon enjoyed traveling to visit their grandchildren and families. He and Justin were able to hang out often and enjoyed each other’s company immensely. Grandpa Jerry never failed to bring his famous chocolate chip cookies along for the grandkids. He was full of laughter, pranks, jokes, hugs, and always a big smile. Jerry was very proud of his family and friends. He worked hard and played hard but didn’t mix the two. We will miss him greatly.
Jerry is survived by his wife Sharon, children: Justin Suhn of Arthur, NE, Todd (Wendy) Suhn of Hermosa, SD, Randy (Karie) Suhn of Riverton, WY, and Jerrian (Beau) Franzen of Morse, TX, James (Julie) Kindopp of Sioux Falls, SD, Justin (Lynn) Kindopp of Gary, SD, Sara (Willie) Gloe, and Amber (Josh) Mason all of Pierre, grandchildren: Slate, Zoey, Kail, Shahayle, Tiayla, Cye, Billy, Jaden, Bailey, Brooklyn, Cooper, Jacob and Daniel. Jerry is also survived by his siblings: Barbara Law of Yankton, Vern (Vicki) Suhn of Eureka, KS, Dale (LeAnn) Suhn of Miller, SD, and Kathy Marsden of Watertown, SD, and numerous nieces and nephews.
Jerry was preceded in death by his parents, brothers-in-law Jerry Law and Bill Marsden.
In lieu of flowers, memorials can be directed to Jerry Suhn Memorial.