OBITUARY

Gerald G Blackstone

August 4, 1938June 6, 2018
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Gerry Blackstone, 79 of Yonkers passed away June 7th. Loving partner of Michael Skaar, survived by many adoring friends and relatives.

Gerry was a favorite high school psychology and chemistry teacher for forty-five years at Eastchester High School. He also loved being a landlord, first in the West Village and most recently on Airbnb.

A devoted vegan, kayak enthusiast, and pot fancier. Gerry loved the great outdoors. He was known throughout the area for his around Manhattan kayaking trips and his passion for mentoring young people on the water.

Everyone who had the great fortune to meet Gerry described him as a character; he could often be spotted around town wearing tie-dye and toting his many bags. Gerry lived a remarkable life and was a brilliant man ahead of his time, he will be missed.

May he rest in peace as he joins his partner Michael of nearly half a century

Visitation be held at Whalen and Ball Funeral Home: 168 Park Ave, Yonkers NY 10703 from 2-5pm with a memorial service at 5pm, reception following at the Bezak Environmental Education Center as well as an additional celebration of life June 20th at JFK Marina.

Donations in lieu of flowers should be made to the River Riders foundation c/o YPRC paddling and rowing club

Services

  • Visitation Sunday, June 10, 2018
  • Service Sunday, June 10, 2018
REMEMBERING

Gerald G Blackstone

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Flex Kayakfari

June 17, 2018

Jerry Blackstone in 2015 - the happy kayaker paddling the annual New Year's Loop in Ft Lauderdale, Florida.

This is the way I will remember him, as will many local South Florida paddlers. He will be missed!
RIP friend, paddle on forever more!!

Flex Kayakfari

June 17, 2018

Jerry Blackstone in 2015 - the happy kayaker paddling the annual New Year's Loop in Ft Lauderdale, Florida.
https://www.meetup.com/kayaking-130/events/219376477/

This is the way I will remember him, as will many local South Florida paddlers. He will be missed!
RIP friend, paddle on forever more!!

Fern Matzkin

June 12, 2018

I had Mr. B. for psychology the first year we worked with rats. To this day it was undoubtedly my favorite class at EHS. Whenever high school memories are talked about I always mention Mr. B & his psych class. He made learning enjoyable & fun & I still remember much from his class. I even remember our rat's name...Sam Anthony Erin Yerkes I & II (how's that for a memory!!) It's warming to know Mr. Blackstone led a happy & full life & that he will be missed by many.

Jonathan Munves

June 11, 2018

As part of the Class of '69, I learned many things from Gerry Blackstone. Some of them were:
1. A mole is not just a "furry little critter."
2. Elemental sodium explodes when dropped into toilet water in the boys bathroom.
3. Drying nitroglycerin should always be removed from the classroom radiator before it starts to crackle.
4. A Skinner Box filled with rats is a method for studying human behavior.
5. You don't need The City's permission to convert a garage in Queens into a rental apartment.

More importantly, Gerry's energetic enthusiasm for teaching and his selflessness for his students knew no bounds. He gave of his time and talents freely. He took a personal interest in us. He expanded our horizons. He did things his way, with no apologies. He never hesitated to be himself. Maybe this was his best lesson of all. I'm sorry to see him go.

Stephen Ibelli

June 11, 2018

Mr. Blackstone (I don’t think I ever called you by your first name even after I graduated! :),

You were an inspiration. A transformative figure for so many that passed through our high school’s doors. Year after year.

Your encouragement and enthusiasm helped me set my life’s trajectory; helped me internalize self confidence; helped me build a safe harbor for taking appropriate risks.

Upon graduation, your generosity created countless NYC memories. Experiences I have taken with me in all my travels.

I can never repay that, only try to pass it forward as you selflessly did for so many.

Wherever you are Mr. Blackstone:

May the wind be at your back,
The road rise to meet you,
The sun shine gently on your face,
Till we meet again.

Stephen

Beth Seacord

June 11, 2018

I had Mr. Blackstone for chem as a junior. I think it was his second year at EHS and he already had a rep. Countless hours on Saturdays and after school I finally understood moles and then excelled in a class in which I would have given up with any other teacher. So then of course I took psych. Don't think I ever knew that Peter B drove to get the rats, but when the equipment arrived I was comandeered with another student to set up the rat lab in the third floor boys' room. That's when I learned about asking forgiveness rather than permission.
Thanks to Mr. B I will never forget moles or standard deviation, catalysts or chocolate covered ants. Or how to change a tire, as the students did on his VW bug one Sat morning.
Rest in peace and love. Paddle on, Mr Blackstone.
Beth Seacord
Class of 69

Steve Sokoloff

June 11, 2018

I had Gerry for Chemistry in 1970, and Psychology in 71. He was also my debate coach. My first encounter with a computer was in Chem class, and it didn’t go well, but he was always upbeat. In the fall of Junior year, I found 4 tickets to the Grateful Dead at the Fillmore East and we went to the show. When we were in line waiting to go in, Gerry walked by and said he had lost his tickets but was going to buy a couple. We said nothing about funding them and saw a great show. At our 40th reunion, Jerry was there and I confessed that we had found the tix he lost and used them. He thought it was hilarious, and handed me a brownie.
Gerry taught us all it was fine to be yourself and not worry what others thought. RIP Gerry Blackstone! There won’t ever be another.

Peter Babakian

June 11, 2018

I had Mr Blackstone for psychology during my senior year at EHS ( Class of 69) . I remember being sent to New Jersey with my car to pick up a load of lab rats. Of course i had a junior license and was not allowed in the City. Going thru the Holland tunnel after meeting Mr Blackstone in the Village, i was terrified i would get caught. Later at Syracuse i majored in psych. I always say that my psych classes made me a top salesman in later years.
We invited Gerry to our 40th reunion and had great fun all of us catching up.
Gerry you were an inspiration. R.I.P

Deborah Hartman

June 10, 2018

Gerry was my chemistry and psychology professor. I remember often holding his coffee as he unlocked the door to the classroom. It must have been an early class. His classes were always fun and he was one of my favorite teachers. Rest In Peace.
(Class of 1975)

Kim Wilkens smith

June 9, 2018

Mr Blackstone was my chemistry teacher back in 1984. He made the difficult class fun with his colorful personality (and shirts)! He wanted everyone to learn the material so he allowed us to retake every single quiz until we were satisfied with our grade and he stayed at the school until 11pm sometimes giving extra help!! We loved him so much we dedicated our senior yearbook to Mr B in 1987!!