Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Jerry Silver

Jerry was known as the Rule Czar at poker  To my knowledge he never played in a casino poker room, but he had a clear and certain sense of how the game should go, and he usually got his way.
Actually, the last time I saw him, at a Gregg game,  I insisted on my way. 
He liked playing in my regular seat to the right of Gregg and had taken that seat away from me the week before. 
I came early.
I "locked" up the seat with my card protector and my chips.  He still wanted to unseat me, claiming to actually hold the seat I had to be sitting in it.
"It is common in a casino to lock up a seat with a card protector," I explained.
"But this is not a casino," he countered.
Still, even with his argument developed, he relented and let me have my regular place for our last game together.  As I remember, he won big.

In the old days it would take a long, long while for Jerry to make decision on how to play a hand. He would sit and figure and try to remember.  He would do math in his head or seem to.  He never quoted percentages. 
In later times he speeded up his action after taking plenty of ribbing from everyone.
At the old games at my house, he would deal the game.  I liked that.  He was the first I knew who volunteered to do that and it was a huge relief to me.  I hate dealing.

One day he showed up at Burden Lake on Saturday for a game scheduled for Sunday. 
"Am I early?"  he asked.
"Only by one day." I answered.
He came in, and we played a bit of head to head Omaha for an hour or so.   I won, so he was doubly frustrated.

In the last couple years Jerry has been a Facebook friend who played MyVegas and he was generous in remembering to send me chips whenever he could.  One time he wished he could send me his loyalty points (those that are used to directly redeem comps in Vegas).  There were times when I was out of playing chips and what he sent me got me moving again.  Wild Bill shared my comps the first trip (BeeGees Tribute, a couple buffets) and Elizabeth and I used $700 worth on our last trip.  Thanks, Jerry.

What I will never forget was the way Jerry would fold his cards when he had waited a long, long while to act and finally had decided to be beat.  Once he gave up hope for that hand, he would fold and mournfully say, "What a shame!"
His expression, tone and phrase seem to perfectly capture my feelings as we are forced to let him go this week. 


Silver, Gerald O. HARTSVILLE, S.C. Mr. Gerald O. Silver, 60, formerly of Waterford passed away on Friday, November 29, 2013 at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in North Carolina after a brief illness. He was born August 6, 1953 to Reuben Jacob Silver and Mary Bayerle Silver. He was vice president of Business Administration and Finance at the Sage Colleges for more than 30 years. He relocated to Hartsville in 2010 and took the position of vice president of Business Operations at Coker College. Jerry was a member of the Delmar Businessmen Bowling League and a Siena College alumnus. He was a member of the Coaches Club of Siena College Basketball, a member of the Stadium Golf Course league and also an avid New York Yankees fan. He was preceded in death by his mother. Surviving are his loving wife, Cindy Theilmann Silver; devoted children, Samuel Silver (Kerianne) of Clifton Park, Matthew Silver (Jessica) of Saratoga Springs and AnnaMae Martin (Jesse) of Buffalo; a granddaughter, Charlotte Marion Silver of Clifton Park; his father, Dr. Reuben Silver of Wilmington, N.C.; a sister, Kathy Pearre (Howard) of Winston-Salem, N.C. and many nieces and nephews. A private memorial service was held on Sunday, December 1, 2013. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the American Cancer Society , P.O. Box 22718, Oklahoma City, OK 73123-1718 or cancer.org. Online condolences may be made at hayworth-miller.com. Hayworth-Miller Silas Creek Chapel, Winston-Salem, N.C.

Published in Albany Times Union from Dec. 2 to Dec. 3, 2013

Bill Neuman:
Dear Cindy and Jerry's family, I just re-read the Jerry's obituary and noticed there was a place to offer condolences. To say I am shocked and saddened by Jerry's passing is an understatement. We were friends for almost 50 years. I first met Jerry at Saturday morning bowling when he was in 5th grade. Until he moved away and a few college years we bowled together in a league for 40+ years. We won a city league championship together with the Delmar Businessmen. He and I bowled as teammates and against each other in the Action Lanes Classic for over 30 years. We had great times in Lake Placid, first fishing weekends, and then when the fishing turned sour, golfing. Great memories of our Ironman competition and the Battle of Saratoga golf matches with John Safarik and John Sterrett. It was an honor to be Jerry's best man at your wedding. I remember someone telling me at your wedding, that I was supposed to prank your car. So I filled up the hubcaps with stones, only to find out you took someone else's car. I'm very glad I made an effort to go play poker this past August and ultimately, seeing him for the last time. I will miss him very much. Our Friday night Delmar Businessmen and Lake Placid golfers are planning a get together to toast Jerry and share our memories, very soon.