Gerald E. “Jerry” Sayers

November 06, 1948 ‒ November 16, 2016

Sunbury, Ohio

Gerald E. “Jerry” Sayers, age 68, of Sunbury died early Wednesday morning, November 16, 2016 at his residence after a courageous battle with small cell cancer.

He was born on November 6, 1948 in Columbus, Ohio at the old White Cross Hospital (Riverside Methodist Hospital) the daughter of Alfred M. and Jean (Huber) Sayers.

Jerry was a graduate of Reynoldsburg High school in the class of 1967.  Shortly after graduation he was inducted into the United States Navy.  He served on the USS Sanctuary, a Haven-class hospital ship, during the Vietnam War.

After his honorable discharge, he began work at The Ohio State University Hospital as a Nursing Assistant.  While working at OSU he developed a special relationship with a fellow coworker.  That student nurse, Anita Smith, eventually became his fiancé and they were married at the Presbyterian Church in Sharonville, Ohio on November 20, 1971.

The same year he and Anita were married, Jerry became a Police Officer for the City of Columbus.  During his 33-year tenure, he worked four jobs, but his last before retirement in 2004, was his favorite.  He was a Firearms instructor at the Police Academy.

Jerry loved going fishing on his boat on Alum Creek and was a huge fan of history, especially military history.  He’d read anything he could get his hands on in regards to that specific topic.

When describing him, his family used words like, “pensive”, “stoic”, and “serious”.  They told a story of his coworkers claiming if you could get Jerry to smile it was a special day.  But, behind the seriousness lay a loving, kind, and gentle soul with blue eyes that spoke of quiet intelligence and wisdom.

He will be missed by his wife Anita; their children Erin Patricia Griffith and her husband Eric of Tipp City, Ohio and Alfred James “A.J.” Sayers of Columbus; grandchildren Abigail and William Griffith; his mother Jean Sayers of Irmo, South Carolina; sister Linda Antill and her husband Jim of Irmo, South Carolina; and brother Cary Sayers and his wife Carolyn of Chillicothe, Ohio.

He was preceded in death by his father, Alfred.

Jerry belonged the VFW Post # 8736 in Sunbury.

Friends may call on the family on Sunday, November 20, 2016 from 2-4 PM at the DeVore-Snyder Funeral Home, 637 North State Route 61, Sunbury, Ohio 43074.  A private family gathering to celebrate his life will take place at a later date.

If desired, memorial contributions may be made to Hospice of Central Ohio at

The DeVore-Snyder Funeral Home of Sunbury is honored to serve Mr. Sayers family.  Special memories and condolences can be shared with them at

  • My thoughts and prayers today will be filled with great memories of working with Gerry and condolences for the family.

    As a police recruit learning how to shoot, I would ALWAYS gravitate towards Gerry. I would look down the firing line and choose a both near where he was standing. If those booths were taken, I would make sure I arrived a few minutes earlier the next time. His calm and reassuring words not only taught me how to shoot but also taught me how to handle adversity. I am a better police officer today because of him.

    Thank you so much for sharing him with us and may God bless you.

  • Jerry was a fine man who will truly be missed. He and I were members of the 43rd recruit class at CPD, and I remember his quiet steady ways as we progressed through the academy. A bit later on, our paths crossed when he worked 12 Pct. and I worked 6 Pct. We lost touch as the years passed, but I remember Jerry well, and extend special condolences to his family and co-workers at CPD.

  • Scott and I are fortunate to call you neighbors. Jerry was always a gentle, kind man. I suppose we had some special days knowing Jerry because we saw that smile quiet a few times. We are saddened to hear he passed. Ours prayers go out to you and the family as your go through your grieving process. May all your fond memories of Jerry help to give you peace and comfort. Hugs!

    Scott and Linda Parsley
    Eric and Paige

  • Jerry was a ’67 classmate. Our class is saddened by the news of his passing. We were hoping he would join us next fall for our 50th reunion. Jerry will be remembered along with other classmates that have welcomed him this week in the forever and ever.
    Jerry was fun in school and a little ornery, fun ornery ! Great personality and I am sure he was a dedicated leader on the Columbus Police Department. I have always heard great things about him.
    His loss is being felt by many. Our sincere condolences to his family. Please give our classmates a hug for us, Jerry, when you meet them again.
    Love, Vickie Edwards Hall and your Reynoldsburg classmates.

  • Anita and children, Steve just told me of Jerry’s passing. I am so very sorry. He truly was Steve’s brother from another mother! Funny story. When Steve and I first got together, Jerry despised me. Never did know why. I won!!!! He stood up with us at our wedding. Good memories. God bless