It is with heavy hearts that we announce the passing of a cherished colleague, a dear friend, and an extraordinary leader, Gerald (Jerry) Pool. Jerry passed away in his sleep last week and will be deeply missed, not only within Tec Inc., but also throughout the entire engineering community.
Jerry worked as a draftsman and then as an electrical engineer for Watkins Engineering before becoming a partner and director of the electrical engineering department at Tec Engineering and Design in 1985. A born teacher, Jerry started teaching the National Electrical Code in 1969 and founded Professional Engineering Consultants. He instructed hundreds of electricians in Northeast Ohio for over 40 years. He was widely considered an expert on the NEC, and he had a passionate and engaging presentation style. He retired from TEC in 2001 and from teaching in 2009. Jerry was more than just an integral member of Tec Inc.'s staff; he was the heart and soul of our engineering team. With a career spanning decades, he dedicated himself to the pursuit of excellence in all that he did. His innovative mind, exceptional problem-solving skills, and unwavering commitment to the field of engineering made him a true luminary in our profession.
Some of our longtime staff members shared some memories of Jerry with us as we remember him.
Steve Schwarten shared his experiences with Jerry during his early career, saying, "Jerry reviewed my work before it was sent out. It was a pleasure working with Jerry; he was kind, let me take the projects as far as I could, and challenged me and provided insight which made me a better designer."
Jerry wasn't just a leader; he was a mentor and a source of inspiration to all who worked alongside him. He had an uncanny ability to bring out the best in everyone, pushing us to reach new heights and challenging us to think beyond the conventional boundaries of engineering.
"He was highly respected in the engineering field, and people still remember him for teaching excellent code classes," shared by Joelle Poploske. "Those classes are now being taught by (his son) Tim. I remember his love of traveling across the country, his love of trains, and his love of Girl Scout cookies! He would buy so many boxes and keep them in the freezer so he could have them all year round."
Terry Kilbourne, Tec Inc.'s CEO, recounted, "His detailed approach to engineering solutions taught our staff the importance of selecting the best solution. He had a natural curiosity and many varied interests. He was a great partner and a valued member of the team. We all learned valuable lessons from Jerry."
Beyond his professional accomplishments, Jerry was a remarkable person in every sense. His warm smile, sense of humor, and genuine kindness endeared him to everyone he met. He had a passion for life that was infectious, and his love of family was unmatched.
At Tec Inc., we will forever be grateful for the time we spent with Jerry. The memories of his guidance, laughter, and camaraderie will continue to inspire us. As we mourn his loss, we also celebrate the incredible life he lived and the indelible mark he left on our hearts.
Jerry Pool's legacy will endure through the knowledge he shared, the relationships he nurtured, and the impact he made on our profession. As we remember him, we will honor his memory by continuing to strive for excellence, embracing innovation, and supporting each other as he always did.
A memorial service will be held in Jerry's honor on November 11th at First Covenant Church of Willoughby Hills.