August 27, 1934 ~ October 26, 2022 (age 88)


Known as “Bud” or “Buddy,” John K. Gerlach, Jr., peacefully entered the pearly gates on October 25, 2022. He grew up in Tunica Mississippi, loved the Tunica cut-off, was a veteran of the Korean War, and attended Mississippi State University (KA). He was a genuine southern gentleman! A fierce, diehard “BULLDOG” fan and loved the Kentucky Derby. He always had a good story to share or a great joke to tell. His life’s work was in sales. He sold cars, mobile homes, boats, amongst a lot of other things, in areas like Memphis, TN, Mississippi, Arkansas and Oklahoma. He was loved by many!! He will be fondly remembered and greatly missed.

Born August 27, 1934, in West Helena, AR, to John Klaus Gerlach, Sr. and Jennie (Winifred Jane) Adams Gerlach.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Sondra Lunsford Gerlach, and his daughter Katrina Byrum; his parents: John and Jennie Gerlach; his sisters: Frances Gerlach Phifer, Bettye Jean Chambliss; his niece: Frances Dodson; and his nephew: Raymond Phifer.

He is survived by his daughter, Denice Byrum (Thor)Capehart, of Blytheville, AR; his grandchildren: Cade Darby, of Manila, AR; Amber Capehart of Blytheville, AR; and Pinnell Capehart of New Jersey; his great grandchildren: Macy Darby, Jack Darby, Cody Darby and Cate Darby all of Manila, AR and Riley Grace Capehart of New Jersey; his nieces: Hollie Grisham (Brian) Williams of Memphis, TN; Sherrie Phifer (Brian) Smith of Clermont, FL; Bettye Lane Chambliss of Sunrise Beach, TX; his great nieces: Kaylee Williams, of Memphis, TN; Mickey Kosarek, of Houston, TX; and Rena (Robert)Dodson of Sparta, TN; great nephews: Freddie Dodson of Spencer, TN; Dustin J. Smith and Carl Dylan Smith, both of Clermont, FL.; his brother-in-law, Lane Chambliss of Sunrise Beach, TX; his friends at Doc’s,  as well as a host of other family and special friends.

Bud has donated his body to the University of Tennessee for research and study. He asks that any donations be made to the Mississippi State University Athletic Department.

A memorial service will be announced later.

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