Longtime Supporter of U.P. High School Running, Paul Gerard, Passes Away at 72
Paul Gerard, a sports photographer who graciously provided his time and photography, free of charge, passed away on May 4, 2019 at the age of 72. Paul was a great supporter of high school sports in Michigan's Upper Peninsula and also a huge supporter of RunMichigan.com. Paul provided photos for a number of years to RunMichigan from all of Michigan's U.P. MHSAA XC and Track and Field State Meets. His great photos provided joy and memories to thousands of high school athletes.
According to Paul's obituary, Paul Francis Gerard was born in Hancock September 11, 1946, to Nick and Rachel Gerard of L’Anse where he grew up. He graduated from L’Anse High School in 1964, then served in the Air Force and attended Northern Michigan University. While completing his degree he met Kristine Erickson; they were married in Gladstone on August 26, 1972. After graduation they moved to Gladstone where he set up shop as a professional photographer. Paul changed career paths shortly after their daughter, Rachel, was born and spent the rest of his working life serving his country as a Quality Assurance Representative for the Department of Defense. He traveled overseas to further his genealogical research, and also for his work. In his free time, he loved to work on computers and cheer on the Packers.
Paul retired in January 2007, shortly after his beloved wife passed away. He traveled across Michigan for the next 10 years, shooting photos at hundreds of sporting events along the way and bringing smiles to students and athletes whenever they saw “Grandpa Camo”. He provided professional quality photos free of charge to any who wanted them. Paul continued his sports photography ministry until failing health made it impossible for him to hold a camera. At that point, the children who knew him as just “Grandpa” had the privilege of living with him and loving and caring for him on a daily basis. Paul lived with his daughter and family in Houghton for a time, and brought smiles to many caregivers that crossed his path. In his last years, he loved to give away pocket pens and his extensive recipe collection.
Thank you Paul for all you did for running in Michigan.
Please click here for Paul's full obituary.