Jarrell Joe Priess

Jerry passed peacefully at home on February 4, 2024. He was preceded in death by his parents, Leroy and Viona Priess, and his daughter Cindy Knapp. He is survived by his wife, Vicki, Sister Joyce Marie Priess, Daughter Cathy Gaines and husband David, stepdaughter Lisa Els and husband Randy, Stepson Ronnie Boatman, Granddaughters Jessica Little and husband Cody, Amanda Knapp, Chelsea Vuncannon and husband Nick, Grandson Austin Gaines and 3 great grandsons.

Jerry was born in Stafford, Kansas to Leroy and Viona Priess. He spent his summers working on his grandparent’s farm and played basketball and football in high school. As a Scout, he earned the rank of Eagle Scout and the God and Country award. Jerry had a talent for drawing and his rich baritone rang out in church hymns.

Jerry began his military career at the age of 17 when he joined the Oklahoma National Guard. He continued his career by moving through several different commands and finishing his 32-year career Lieutenant Colonel in the Army Reserves. Awards during his military career included numerous Superior Ratings both individually and as Commanding Officer of various units.

He graduated from the University of Kansas and began his career as an electrical engineer with Lear jet, moving on to Cessna. Jerry’s knowledge and experience with Cessna projects led to a leadership role with Flight Research Group, Aircraft Operations Division, NASA, in Houston where he remained until he retired in 2019 after 50 years.

In spite of being occupied with military and civilian work, he found time to devote his resources and time to various volunteer and philanthropic causes. He was a life member of the KU Alumni Association. He has been honored for providing a bequest to the 100 Million Dollar Club in support of the World’s Greatest Philanthropy for the Shriner’s Hospital for Children. He was a Master Mason, Scottish Rite Mason and a Shriner. He was a volunteer driver for the Shriner’s Hospital for Children shuttling patients to and from the hospital to the airport or bus station. He was a Life Member of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo, member of Lighthouse Charity Team, Galveston Bay Parrothead Club, Krewe Babalu, and Ritches Raiders BBQ cookoff Team. He was a volunteer judge for the Odyssey of the Minds at the local, district, state and National level. He also worked with numerous other charities to raise money for research, heath police and crisis intervention.
Jerry was a generous supporter of independent singer/songwriters in the Trop Rock genre. He was a great friend to many musicians in the area and his generosity was limitless.
He had a great sense of humor and always ready with a smile.

Visitation will be held on Saturday, February 10, 2024 from 3-6 PM at Crowder Funeral Home, 1645 E Main Street, League City, Texas.

Burial will be at Fairview Park Cemetery, St. John, Kansas on February 17th at 1:00PM.  A Memorial Service will be held Saturday, March 2, 2024, 11am at Clear Lake United Methodist Church,  16335 El Camino Real, Houston, Texas 77062. In lieu of flowers, the family would like donations be sent to: Shriners Temple, Attn: Transportation Corp, 1616 W 23rd Street, Galveston, Texas 77550 or Hospice Care Team, 1441 32nd Ave N., Texas City, Texas 77591.

Photo montage at link below:




  1. Jerry Pries was a great friend, and a great supporter of many musicians in the Clear Lake area, including me. He and Vicki were often in the crowd at many, many of our shows, and other friends who also perform. He never asked anything of us, only wanted to contribute to keeping the music alive. We will miss him dearly. I’m sure he’s shaking things up in Heaven as we speak!

    Jerry Diaz
    • Jerry was an amazing person and generous to all.He will be missed by all.

      Sandy and Rus Records

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