Gerald (Jerry) Parrish McGrath
Jerry McGrath, born in Nashville, TN November 22, 1947, passed away peacefully on the evening of January 30, 2022 in Panama City, Florida surrounded by his loving family.
Preceded in death by his father John Paul McGrath Sr., his mother Marquerite Parrish McGrath, brothers Michael Lee McGrath, and John Paul McGrath Jr.
Survived by his loving wife of 42 years Judy Elmore McGrath, Gerald “Parrish” McGrath II (Kelli Dowlen McGrath), Bridgette Peyton McGrath, Stephen Michael McGrath, John Patrick McGrath (Alexis Santoro), granddaughter Madison Rhea McGrath, brother Leonard “Butch” McGrath (Linda Graviett), brother-in-law Steve Elmore, and nieces Nina, Pam, Patti, Paula and nephew John.
Jerry grew up helping his father and brothers at the Moon McGrath Pharmacy in downtown Nashville on Union. He attended Christ the King Church and School and was a graduate of Father Ryan High School Class of 1966. Competing in baseball, football, basketball (and a brief stint with track) his fondest memories are as a player in the historic “Game that Changed the South” against Pearl Cohn in 1965.
Jerry was a veteran of two wars, serving in Vietnam and in the Gulf War. Enlisting in the US Navy, he was assigned to the First Marine Division in Vietnam in 1968. Many years later serving in the Naval Reserves, he was called to action in The Gulf War due to his experience as a Navy Corpsman. He was awarded two Purple Hearts among other acknowledgements and appreciations for his service.
An avid Tennessee Volunteer fan, he frequently made trips to support the Vol football teams in bowl games, especially the National Championship game in 1999.
Jerry followed his passion as a coach with his brother Butch while still in high school for the Junior Knothole baseball league. Years later he would coach at St. Henry School helping with the football team and won the Boys Parochial League Basketball Championship in 1976. He would later go on to coach Lipscomb Green Hills Little League, Grassland Football, Brentwood Blaze football, Civitan Babe Ruth baseball and WNSL basketball.
While he had a love of coaching, he was most passionate while taking a seat in the stands. Supporting his children and granddaughter on every court, field, pool or course, he was always their biggest fan.
Making his home in Nashville, Houston, TX, Denver, CO, Sarasota, FL, and back home to Nashville a few times in between, as a career salesman he always followed the next opportunity. He made a pledge if he survived a year long battle with throat cancer in 2014, he was moving to white sand and blue water, settling on Panama City Beach where he would spend his time enjoying the sun, cooking for his family, and his favorite pastime, golf.
He was surrounded by family in his last days who would spend the time sharing stories, telling all those around him how proud he was and how much he loved them, and even getting to joyfully acknowledge his grandson due in May.
The family would like to thank the VA Hospitals, and the staff at Ascension Sacred Heart Bay Hospital.
Visitation will be on Tuesday February 8, 2022 from 4:00-7:00 pm. Visitation on Wednesday February 9 from 12:00 to 1:00 pm, with a Celebration of Life at 1:00pm, at Harpeth Hills Funeral Home, 9090 Hwy. 100, Nashville, TN 37221. Committal at Middle Tennessee State Veterans Cemetery Thursday February 10, at 10:00 am.
Honorary Pallbearers Father Ryan Class of 1966.
In lieu of flowers please make a donation to Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation or Wounded Warriors, and always thank a veteran for their service.