Jerry Eugene Dugger passed away Thursday, Nov. 16, 2023, at home surrounded by his family. He was born March 30, 1948, to Claire and Arlene Dugger. He graduated from Murray Community School in 1967 where he enjoyed playing football, dancing at the Legion Hall in Afton, and participating in the FFA.
Never one to sit on his laurels, Jerry’s adventurous, scrappy, “can do” spirit led him to several states across America before joining the Air Force in 1972. From there, he took the chance to see the world as a trained aircraft technician and aircraft inspector for the Department of Defense under the United States Navy. The pinnacle of his career was working on the SR-71 Blackbird: The Cold War spy plane that’s still the world’s fastest airplane. He worked for the Department of Defense from 1984 till retirement on March 31, 2013, at Jacksonville Naval Air Station in Jacksonville, Florida.
Always one to seize life with both hands, Jerry never met a stranger, never passed up a chance to dance with a pretty girl, and never quit. Jerry had no children of his own, but he enjoyed and attended all the major events with his nephew Bruce and niece Dana. He traveled many miles for graduations, weddings and family reunions and funerals. He told his family he had done everything he had wanted to do like skiing in the mountains, deep sea diving, skydiving, traveling with family members and dancing. He loved life and wanted to do the next thing that he had not done.
Jerry had many health issues, but he never let it slow him down. He was always looking for a way to improve and cure his health. He then wanted to share that knowledge with everybody, and so the consummate adventurer became the passionate teacher! In recent years he was led to the Lord by two special friends and was saved. He wanted his departure from this earth to be a joyous one. He wanted to hear laughter, see dancing and smiles.
Jerry leaves to cherish his memory; sister, Karen (Jerry) Bright of Burlington, NC. Brother, Randy Dugger of Jacksonville, FL, nephew Bruce (Sharon) Bright of Burlington, NC. Niece, Dana Bright of High Point NC., great-nephews Daniel, Andrew and David Bright and Debbie Bebout of Melrose, FL, a friend who spent many special times with Jerry.
Jerry was preceded in death by his mother Arlene Dugger, father Claire R. Dugger and brother Gary Dean Dugger and close cousins Ronnie and Mark Bacon and Max Dugger.
Jerry was cremated and services with military honors will be at a later date Memorial contributions may be directed to Murray Cemetery Fund. Online condolences may be directed to the family at www.kalefuneralhome.com