OBITUARY

Jerry Joseph Colley

May 12, 1944February 17, 2021

Jerry Joseph Colley, age 76, of Atlanta, passed away peacefully on February 17, 2021 from complications of leukemia. He was with his wife and older son. Mr. Colley was born May 12, 1944 in Atlanta, the fourth child of Van Buren and Hallie R. Colley. He attended high school at St. Pius X Catholic High School in Atlanta. He received his BBA in Accounting from Georgia State University (GSU) in 1966, his Master of Professional Accountancy from GSU in 1968, and his Master of Taxation from GSU in 1983. Mr. Colley was a member of Delta Sigma Pi, national business fraternity, Beta Gamma Sigma, national honorary business society, and Beta Alpha Psi, national honorary accounting society. Mr. Colley served in the Finance Corps of the U.S. Army from Feb. 1968 until honorably discharged from active duty in Nov. 1969, serving at Ft. Benning GA, Ft. Ord CA, and one year at US Army HQ in Long Binh, Vietnam.

He worked for 2 years as a Senior Accountant for what is now Price Waterhouse Coopers in the Atlanta office. He worked for 3 ½ years as Secretary-Treasurer and CFO of a major real estate development company in Atlanta. He was founder and majority owner of Colley & Kise, CPAs, for 16 years, with offices in Stone Mountain, Tucker, and Duluth GA.

Mr. Colley taught for many years as an adjunct instructor of accounting at DeKalb College (now GSU), Emory University, and taught taxation at Georgia State University.

In 1984, Mr. Colley was a founder of the Bicycle Ride Across Georgia (BRAG) and a member of the Board of Directors. By 1990, he had become Ride Director and CEO of BRAG, leading it to become one of the premier cross-state bicycle rides in the nation. He started the BRAG Spring Tune-Up Ride, the Georgia BikeFest, and the BRAG Winter Ride. He led up to 2,600 people across the state of Georgia on bicycles for a week each June for 25 years.

Mr. Colley was a founder of Bike Florida, another successful cross-state bicycle ride. He also led groups of cyclists to other rides in the U.S., including RAGBRAI, Bike Across Massachusetts, Cycle Across Maryland, Bike FL, C & O Canal, and Natchez Trace.

Mr. Colley and his wife Gloria coordinated many international group bicycle rides including Mexico, Cuba, Costa Rica, France, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Turkey, Hungary, The Baltics, Sweden, and New Zealand. He also participated in hikes with the Atlanta Outdoor Club to Machu Picchu in Peru and across Bavaria in Germany. He and his family visited Brazil, Belize, Guatemala, Croatia, Montenegro, and Greece. During his career, Mr. Colley was a member of the National Bicycle Tour Directors Association (hosting the 1996 Convention), the 1996 Atlanta Paralympic Games (Chairman of the Sports Training Committee), Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce (Chairman of the Small Business Council and CEO Round Table), Habitat for Humanity (Chairman of the Gwinnett County Board of Advisors), Leadership Gwinnett, Young Working for Georgia Gubernatorial Campaign (Co-Treasurer), Max Cleland for Senate Campaign (Financial Advisor), Atlanta World War II Round Table (Founder and First Commander), Atlanta Civil War Round Table (President), Gwinnett County United Negro College Fund (Outstanding Leadership Award), Northlake Kiwanis Club (President), Central Night Shelter for the Homeless (Volunteer Trainer), and a member of the American Institute of CPAs, Georgia Society of CPAs, Southern Bicycle League, Atlanta Track Club, League of American Bicyclists, and the Atlanta Outdoor Club.

Mr. Colley had a lifelong love of bicycling, jogging, walking, camping, hiking, photography, Spanish, Civil War and World War II history, genealogy, and listening to biographical books of successful leaders. Jerry J. Colley is survived by his wife of 51 years, Gloria Thomas Colley, and their two sons, Mark J. Colley of Cumming; Michael T. Colley and his wife, Luciana Lessa Rodrigues of Atlanta. Also surviving are a sister, Nanelle King and the late C.B. King of McDonough; sister, Mimiam Hunt and her husband, Bill Hunt of Doraville; brother, Eric V. Colley and his wife, GeAnne Colley of Benson North Carolina; sister-in-law, Patricia Thomas North and her husband, Jim North of Gainesville, FL and many beloved nieces, nephews, and cousins

Visitation for Mr. Colley will take place at the Roswell Funeral Home, 950 Mansell Rd., Roswell, GA 30076 on February 24th from 4:00 to 6:00. The immediate family is asked to arrive at 3:00. The Mass for Mr. Colley will take place at St. Brendan’s Catholic Church, 4633 Shiloh Rd., Cumming GA, 30040 on February 25th at 11:00.

Burial will take place at the GA National Cemetery, 1080 Scott Hudgens Drive, Canton, GA 30114 on March 10, 2021 @ 1:00 PM

Below please find the link you will share with family and friends so they can view the funeral Mass on Thursday, February 25, 2021 from St. Brendan's . This link will work on any device that is connected to the internet.

https://boxcast.tv/view/funeral-mass--private-aegrccvhjjpazsrarduf

Once they click on the link, they will be asked to enter a password. The password is Colley .

The livestream will begin at 10:50am and will end at 12:15pm.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in memory of Jerry to the Central Night Shelter, located in Central Presbyterian Church. Mailing Address: 2107 N. Decatur Rd., Suite 479, Decatur GA 30033 or donate on line https://www.centralnightshelter.org or donations may be made to St. Brenden’s Catholic Church Food Pantry, 4633 Shiloh Rd., Cumming, GA 30040. Note on memo line: IHO Jerry Colley.

Services

10 March

Graveside Service

1:00 pm - 1:30 pm

Georgia National Cemetery

1080 Scott Hudgens Drive
Canton, Georgia 30114

PREVIOUS SERVICES:

  • Friends and Family Visitation

    Wednesday, February 24, 2021

  • Funeral Service

    Thursday, February 25, 2021

Memories

Jerry Joseph Colley

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Mimi Barkey

March 4, 2021

My sincere regrets on the passing of Mr. Colley. He was a friend to all and inspired many. It was a pleasure to be in his company however fleeting.

Elaine Fenton

February 24, 2021

Dear Gloria,
Mark and I are thinking of you and your family and extend our sympathy to you all. I have so many wonderful memories of biking with Jerry & you - BRAGs and RAGBRAIs, Bike Virginia, C & O Canal. Lots of fun and miles and he was the best. I will miss him and remember him fondly. I hope treasured memories will be comforting to you all now. Take care of yourself and stay well.
Elaine Fenton

Morris Jenkins

February 24, 2021

I remember in 1992 when Jerry and Gloria stayed at our house in Calhoun when the BRAG team was scouting the route for the first mountain BRAG ride, which my daughter at age 12 completed with me. We have many wonderful memories of Jerry and BRAG.
Morris Jenkins

Pam and Jeff Thompson

February 24, 2021

Gloria,

Our hearts were broken when we learned of Jerry’s death. Our lives were blessed by working with Jerry in BRAG. We learned so much from him about planning bike events and always felt part of his team. He was an inspiration. Our prayers will be with you and your family. He will be missed. The biking world has lost a true crusader.

Don and ErIn McAllister

February 24, 2021

We treasure many happy memories of Jerry and his leadership of the Bike Rides across Georgia. Our thoughts and sympathy to Gloria and family.

Harry Wharton

February 23, 2021

I will miss Jerry . My 1st Brag was in 2006 . Dalton to Augusta .
At the end of the ride I saw Jerry in the Parking lot , and ask him
How Many Riders we had for the 2006 BRAG. He Smiled .and looked. at me , and Said 1600. WOW ... I Was Proud to be Part of That BRAG Ride , and have been on many of Jerry.s Rides after That all Where Fun Great Rides.
Thank you Jerry for all you have Done for the Bicycle Community.
Harry Wharton . Lawrenceville Ga..

JOHN GANTT

February 23, 2021

One of my favorites on and off the bike. He was always thinking of others and took action to walk the walk. Goes without saying how much he will be missed. He will always be in our thoughts as well as his lovely bride and family.
Love to you all,
The Gantt Family

James Carroll

February 23, 2021

I remember when Jerry came to Hapeville to eat BBQ with us and ask if we could come back as part of his security team for BRAG. He loved the Hapeville Officers. I'm gonna miss him.

Roswell Funeral Home and Green Lawn Cemetery

February 23, 2021

The staff of Roswell Funeral Home and Green Lawn Cemetery would like to extend our most sincere condolences to the Colley Family. We would like to thank you for entrusting the care of your love one into our hands. Please remember you are not alone and we will always be here for you.

Terry Doherty

February 22, 2021

Jerry was not only a fellow 1962 classmate, but also my technical companion who shared his photographic skills and knowledge. My sincere prayers and profound condolences to all family and friends upon his passing.

FROM THE FAMILY