Remembering Jerry Jones

Friend and neighbor Jerry Jones passed away on April 1st of 2023. I had spoken with Jerry in March when I called to brag about a big bass our grandson, Jack, had caught and to inquire about his health (he’d had heart surgery a few weeks earlier). He sounded weak but he complimented Jack on his catch and I thanked him for all his work on our lakes.

For twenty years Jerry worked to keep our four lakes stocked, our fish feeders working, fish fed, hydrilla invasion under control, beaver and otters at bay, and to regularly report on the health of our lakes. It was Jerry’s idea to turn Lake #2 into Bream Lake, a place for our kids to enjoy, by removing the bass and catfish and stocking it with copper-nosed bluegill and fathead minnows. (We subsequently learned that the overflow from Lake #1, Old Lake, brought with it fingerling bass that thwarted Jerry’s plan for a bream-only lake.)

Jerry was very knowledgeable about knives, and he enjoyed talking with our oldest son, Leo, who was fascinated by them as a boy.

Men like Jerry have made a big difference in our neighborhood by giving their time to make Country Place it is today. Below is is obit, reprinted here:


Jerry D. Jones was born July 6, 1936 in Weston, Texas to Oscar Jones and May Johnson Jones. He died April 1, 2023 in Whitehouse, TX.

Jerry graduated from Boyd High School in McKinney, Texas and from North Texas State University with a BBA degree.

Always industrious, in high school and college he had many part time jobs. After graduating from college he was employed at Texas Instruments in Dallas, beginning in Inventory Control and then as a Sales Engineer in the Chemical Materials Department. After ten years he moved into the field of financial planning, sales of stocks, bonds and mutual funds. Jerry was employed by Dempsey-Tegeler & Co., Underwood Neuhaus & Co., and Drexel Burnham Lambert Inc. In his retirement he began selling sports equipment and eventually specializing in knifes. Throughout his career, Jerry valued his customers and became lifelong friends with many.

Jerry and Jo Ann Moore married in 1957. They had two children, Jack Douglas Jones and Julia Ann Jones. Jo Ann passed away after 56 years of marriage. Jerry spent his final years married to Gloria Hendricks Peterson.
Jerry was an avid fisherman. He was proud that his son caught his first fish at age two and delighted in helping others fish. With that passion he volunteered for over twenty years to stock and manage the Lakes and Parks in the Country Place Community Association.

Jerry was faithful in serving the church. He worked on the Building Committee for the Family Life Center, was the treasurer for the United Methodist Men, organized garage sales for youth scholarships and readily cooked for any event.

Jerry was preceded in death by his parents, sister, Dorris Wynell Smith, son, J. Douglas Jones. He is survived by his daughter, Julia Ann Jones, daughter in law, Chris Jones, grandchildren, Russell Mullins, Courtney Maletic (Paul), Katharine Ruschhaupt, (Cameron) and William Rosebrock, (Sarah) great granddaughter Collins Ruschhaupt, step son Erik Peterson, niece Jan Nowowiejski (Dean) and numerous cousins. Jerry called Craig Firestone his second son and embraced Craig and his family, Laura, Alex, Chrissy, Liam, Nellie, as his own.

After the Rains

I just got home and checked the rain gauge. It read 8″ and was almost overflowing. After a year that saw us 9″ below our normal rainfall, it’s a plus to start off the new year with a frog-strangler. The waterfall below Old Lake (#1) is roaring.

CPCA Lakes

Country Place Community Association owns and maintains four lakes and members are encouraged to use them. Our dues are used to keep the dams, piers and bridges in good repair, to stock and feed the fish, and to mow the shores and areas around the lakes.

The three largest lakes are all fed by the same stream, which begins as a spring on top of the salt dome to our east. There is actually another lake in this chain owned by a farmer. The dam on that lake broke years ago and the silt that flooded downstream choked our first lake for a long time after. The suspended clay has largely settled out now, but we lost a quarter of the lake’s surface area due to the influx of dirt on the upper end. This lake is the Old Lake, or #1 in the sequence. It covers almost three acres and has produced a double-digit bass and a 26-pound high-fin blue catfish, which apparently was mixed in with the fingerling channel cats originally stocked in all our lakes.

The second lake in the chain I refer to as Bream Lake (#2) and represents an experiment in selective stocking undertaken  by former Parks & Lakes manager Jerry Jones. His idea was to replace all the existing catfish and bass in this two-and-a-quarter acre lake with copper nose bluegill to make a kid-friendly fishery. Unfortunately, there is no way to control the fingerling fish that wash down from Old Lake (#1) and only a few years later there is a healthy population of largemouth bass along with some big bluegill.

The third in the chain is Long Lake (#3) and is the largest, with almost 8 acres of surface area. It has produced a number of double-digit bass, along with big channel cats and bluegill. There is a population of crappie, although overpopulation has most of these stunted in the 4-6” size range. Still, they make for great forage for our largemouth bass.  I caught my personal best out of this lake, a 10.5 lb December bass, and know of at least one 13.5 lb fish taken here. Both bass were returned to the water.

A lot of CPCA members get their exercise walking around Long Lake. It’s a natural walking path.

Hidden Lake (#4) is located halfway down our one-mile stretch of private road, Lakeshore, and sits 170 yards back in the woods. It is the smallest of our lakes, at only nine-tenths of an acre, but it is a wonderful place to enjoy the natural beauty of Country Place

If you’re a CPCA member and have children who like to fish or want to learn how, a beginner’s rod, a float, some split-shot, panfish hooks and some worms will catch bream off any of our piers. And you never know when one of those big channel cats will show up hungry!

The Happiest Day

Last evening Jack and I were once again catching bream when his bobber disappeared and when he set the hook, I heard a loud screech from the drag on his reel. The next five minutes were somewhat chaotic, with me trying to help him hold the rod tip up while the big cat made three long runs before coming to hand. The channel cat weighed 8.5 lbs, a respectable catch for a fisherman of any age, but a trophy to a 6-year-old wielding a 24″ Ugly Stik and a plastic reel loaded with 4 lb test line. We released the fish and she swam away to thrill some other kid another day. On the way home, he told me this was the happiest day of his life.