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Posted on August 17, 2015 | 3:30 p.m.

Gerald Leslie Gaskill of Santa Maria, 1930-2015

Source: Dudley-Hoffman Mortuary

Gerald (Jerry) Leslie Gaskill

Gerald (Jerry) Leslie Gaskill passed away on Aug. 11, 2015, at his home.

Jerry was born on September 2, 1930 in Minneola, KS to William Gaskill and Beulah Kimes. He moved with his parents to San Luis Obispo in 1939.

Jerry was one-in-a-million; a true gentleman, a devoted husband, loving father and true friend.

He is survived by his loving wife, Charlotte; his daughter, Jerri Ann, and her husband, Mike Pollard, of Carpinteria, California; and his sister, Joan Logan of San Luis Obispo.

He was preceded in death by his parents, William and Beulah Gaskill; his brother, Dale Kimes; and his sister, June Riley.

One of Jerry's favorite memories of high school, was the time he spent as a bell-hop at the Anderson Hotel.

"Shortly after graduating from San Luis Obispo High School in 1949, he acquired a Richfield service station and ran it until 1951, when he partnered with Jack Hathaway in an auto-parts store.

"Always an avid hot-rodder, Jerry was a regular competitor at Goleta until the strip stopped operating in 1951. With nowhere to race locally, and facing a long drive to the nearest strip in Santa Ana, Jerry looked for alternative places to race.

"Settling first on Santa Maria, and later, San Luis Obispo, Jerry would run both strips successfully, and also field his own dragster, occasionally taking on visiting celebrities like Tony Nancy.

"Gaskill eventually left the world of drag racing to become a sales representative for the Monroe Shock Absorber Company, covering California and Hawaii until his retirement in 1987."

(Courtesy of Jerry Gaskill/Images of America, Hot-Rodding in Santa Barbara County)

By starting the Santa Maria Drag Strip, the third legal one in the United States, Jerry became a legend in his own time. He was also president of the Bent Axles Car Club for 13 years and
remained a very active member.

Jerry married the love of his life, Charlotte Bellino, on Oct. 26, 1968. They were married in her home state of New Jersey. They lived a charmed life and were extremely devoted and loving
to each other.

Besides Charlotte, Jerry had a passion for classic cars, Dr. Pepper, and cherry pie. He was always ready with a joke.

A very special thanks comes to all involved in Jerry's care from Charlotte, Jerri Ann and Mike.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the American Cancer Society at 800-227-2345, 1540 W. Branch Street, Arroyo Grande, California 93420 or Dignity Hospice at 1245 College Drive, Santa Maria 93454.

A celebration of Jerry's life will be held at the Santa Maria Elks Lodge at 1309 N. Bradley Road on Aug. 24 at 10 a.m. A reception will follow.

Jerry was loved by many and will be sorely missed by all who knew him.

To leave a condolence for the family visit


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