|Birth: ||Nov. 27, 1910|
|Death: ||Jan. 28, 2008|
(Sun-Journal obituary January 31, 2008)
AUBURN - Gerard P. Jean Sr., 97, died on Jan. 28, at Clover Manor.
A well-known pianist and teacher, he was born in Lewiston on Nov. 27, 1910, the son of Pierre and Atala Gagnon Jean. He was married to Marguerite Girardin for 53 years; she passed away in October 1983. They had three children, Gerard Jr., Julius (Bud) and Constance. In 1996, he married Jeanne St. Germaine LaFlamme. They continued to live in Lewiston until they moved to Clover Manor in Auburn 2007.
According to his own telling of how his lifelong love of the instrument began, he shared the following: When Pepere (Gerard) was a young boy. he was really impressed when he heard his cousin playing the piano. He said he'd stand next to his cousin at the piano and have him play one song after another. He absorbed a love for the piano from that experience. He asked his mother about taking piano lessons.
He said that because she had been a piano teacher she was able to pick up signs as to whether or not a person would make a good student, if they had an aptitude, that sort of thing. She was so impressed by Pepere's earnestness, that without even hearing him play the piano, she went out and bought a brand-new piano, which cost $750. She was his first instructor. After she taught him for awhile, he went from one piano teacher to another, learning new skills and drills.
There was one teacher in particular that he mentioned. He sort of had an idea that the teacher wasn't paying attention during his lessons. He thought the teacher might even be sleeping! So at one lesson, he started playing softer and softer and he cautiously turned around to see why the teacher hadn't said anything, and the teacher was asleep!
His father had set up a deal with that teacher that Pepere pay him AFTER the lesson, because he felt the teacher would be sure to actually give a lesson to earn the money. Well, when Pepere saw the teacher had fallen asleep, he quietly picked up his sheet music and let himself out of the studio.
It just so happened that this was one of the few days that his father, Pierre, came home during the day. When Pierre saw Pepere at home of course he wanted to know why Pepere wasn't at his lesson. Lessons weren't cheap! When Pepere told him that the teacher had fallen asleep, Pierre said he'd pay the teacher a little visit! Pepere said that he had a different teacher after that.
He received many accolades for his playing of Gershwin's "Rhapsody In Blue" with the Portland Symphony Orchestra, with whom he was their pianist. He was also a gifted soloist on radio and played in many of New England's dance bands popular from the 30s thoughout the 50s. He taught countless students, many of whom went on to successfully pursue careers in music. His own teaching vocation spanned well more than 50 years.
He is survived by his two sons, Gerard Jr. (Marilyn) and Bud (Joanne), both in California; 13 grandchildren, Nancy Jean, Karen (Tom) Cahoon, Denise (Tim) Scammon, Lisa (Jeff) Pengel, Ninette (Pete) Fenlason, Peter (Cristina) Jean, Normand (Anita) Morin, Ronald Morin, Louise (John) Morin, Susan (Doug) Waguespack, Michael (Laura) Jean, Gerard (Kim) Jean and Jennifer (Gregg) Newcome; 26 great-grandchildren, Chris Dumont, Stephanie (Shaheim) Griffin, Karina Dumont, Matthew (Laura) Dumont, Dana Scammon, Jeffrey Scammon, Greg Guay, Tom Guay, Jon Moody, Katelyn Moody, Nicole Poulin, Nicolas Fenlason, Jacob Fenlason, Joshua Fenlason, Brianne Morin, Alayna Morin, Tyler Morin, Nicolette Reibold, Lindsey Jean, Matthew Jean, Amber (Nicolas) Boos, Kristin Jean, Bethany Jean, Tyler Newcome, Dominic Jean and Gianna Jean; two great-great-grandchildren, Angelina Griffin and Levi Guay; a sister, Germaine Jean Carpentier; a special niece, Lorraine (Barry) White; and several nieces, nephews and cousins.
He was predeceased by his first wife, Marguerite, a daughter, Constance (Marcel) Morin; a grandson, Thomas Jean; a great-grandson, Ryan Guay; and two brothers, Reginald Jean and Albert Lambert.
The family would like to thank the staff at Clover Manor for the kindness and compassion shown to Jerry while in their care.
Pierre Philippe Jean (1883 - 1959)
Attala Gagnon Jean (1880 - 1959)
Marguerite Anne Girardin Jean (1912 - 1983)
Jeanne A. St. Germain Jean (1926 - 2008)*
Constance "Connie" Jean Morin (1932 - 2006)*
Julius Valmore Jean (1934 - 2014)*
Malcolm Lambert (1902 - 1918)**
Albert Lambert (1905 - 1986)**
Gerard Pierre Jean (1910 - 2008)
Germaine A. Jean Carpentier (1913 - 2008)*
Reginald P Jean (1921 - 1998)*
Saint Peters Cemetery
Plot: JB-662G-3 VAULT
Created by: Gerry Jean
Record added: Mar 17, 2013
Find A Grave Memorial# 106856807