May 14, 1955 – October 31, 2021
Gerald Oliver “Jerry” Rivet, 66, died at home on October 31, 2021 with his devoted wife at his side. For 17 years, Jerry and Bridget had lived with Primary Lateral Sclerosis (PLS) which transitioned to ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis); he died on his favorite holiday. His absence is palpable.
Jerry was born on May 14, 1955 in Providence Rhode Island the son of Gerald Hector and Dolores (Rainville) Rivet. He was a 1973 graduate of Pawtucket West High School in Pawtucket, Rhode Island and a proud 1979 graduate of the University of Rhode Island. Jerry moved to Connecticut to pursue his career as a systems programmer which spanned nearly 25 years. He worked for CRS (Computerized Retail Systems), ICL Retail Systems/Fujitsu, Ames Department Store and White Oak Systems. He loved computer programming and typically had stacks of technical manuals within reaching distance. He worked with clients in the retail industry all over the country and was recognized as an industry expert.
Jerry believed it was kismet which brought he and Bridget together. They married on December 30, 1989 in Fairfield, Vermont and established Rivet Resort in Cromwell, CT and hosted many gatherings and parties. Jerry enjoyed traveling, the ocean and the salt air, satire (particularly P J O’Rourke and National Lampoon) and many of the finer things in life: a good cigar with a fine port, a cultural event, fine crystal and china and his own replication of Ben’s chili dogs. Fly fishing. Saltwater fishing. Deep sea fishing. All kinds of fishing were his passion. He “came upon” hunting in Vermont and learned to love that. He loved his food, especially sushi and NOLA cuisines and was very fortunate to have married his own personal chef. She catered to his epicurean nature. Jerry and Bridget retired and moved to their slice of paradise (Rivet Resort North) in Fairfield in 2007. But Jerry was always a Rhode Islander.
Jerry was an amazing man with an indomitable spirit. He had an all-encompassing thirst for knowledge, an enormous storage capacity and “didn’t forget a thing”. He was a man about music and movies, all genres, with a preference for black and white movies. His collections are vast, frequently updated and meticulously organized; he was the consummate curator. He had many lists of favorites and a playlist for every occasion, including his wake.
He always took the time to teach his nieces and nephews and shared everything about his passions. Age appropriate was not a filter and all learned how to mix Uncle Jerry’s perfect martini at a young age. Uncle Jerry became Uncle Fun who evolved to the Fungi and, most recently, Silly Uncle Jerry. He loved each of his favorites and captured their hearts and minds.
Jerry always focused on what he had and what he had done; he was an engineer at heart and ingenious. As challenges arose, he Jerry-rigged solutions to maintain a high quality of life. We will remember the sparkle in his eyes, the ever-present smile, the sharp wit and his many sets of rules.
Jerry is survived by Bridget Howrigan Rivet his wife of 31 years, 14 “favorite” nieces and nephews and 8 great nieces and nephews: Richard Rivet (wife Barbara & Zack), Brendan Howrigan (wife Morgan, Lanie & Howard), Harold Howrigan III (wife Tamithy & Landon), Amy Howrigan Boyle (husband Major Josh, Isla & Seamus), Adam Howrigan, Ryley Howrigan, Tim Howrigan, Kiley Deuso (husband Nick, Kyrielle & Kaden), Cullen Howrigan, Kathryn Howrigan (fiancé Kris Sabourin), Emerson Paradee, Austen Paradee, Brennan Paradee and Cpl Oliver Paradee. He is also survived by his sister Susan Rivet, his sister-in-law Ellen Howrigan Paradee and his brothers-in law and spouses Lawrence (Lisa) Howrigan, Mike (Penny) Howrigan and Harold (Elizabeth) Howrigan Jr.
He was predeceased by his parents Gerald H Rivet and Dolores Rivet, his brother John and his parents-in-law Harold J and Anne (Rowley) Howrigan.
Bridget expresses her profound gratitude for the care that Jerry received by his many caregivers, especially Tammy, Kathy and Morgan, and the dedicated staff of angels from Franklin County Home Health Agency for the past 12 years.
Bridget will receive family and friends on Friday November 5th, 2021, from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. at the Heald Funeral Home, 87 South Main St, St Albans, Vermont.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Saturday, November 6th, 2021 at 11:00 AM at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church in Fairfield with the Reverend Jerry Mercure as celebrant.
In lieu of flowers, we ask you consider a memorial to Franklin County Home Health Agency, 3 Home Health Circle, St Albans, Vermont 05478.
Honored to be serving the Rivet family is the Heald Funeral Home, where messages of condolence are welcome at www.healdfuneralhome.com