Gordon E. Jackson, 85, steelworker

November 27, 2005

Gordon E. "Buddy" Jackson, a steelworker and musician, died Monday at the Baltimore Veterans Affairs Rehabilitation and Extended Care Center. The lifelong Highlandtown resident was 85.

Mr. Jackson left high school in the 1930s to work as a plumber's assistant but later earned his high school diploma by attending night classes at Polytechnic Institute.

He married Naomi Rejzek in 1941 and, with the start of World War II, went to work at the American Hammer Division of Koppers United Co. making piston rings.

He was drafted into the Army in 1944 and served in the infantry in Europe through 1945. He received a Purple Heart and the Silver Star.

He returned to American Hammer for several years and then spent eight years at Standard Oil's Baltimore plant before beginning a 30-year career with Bethlehem Steel. He retired in 1986.

Starting as a teenager, Mr. Jackson was a part-time professional trumpet player. He played with Baltimore big bands, including the Ray Newton Orchestra.

He stopped playing in public in the 1970s, when shift work at the steel plant prevented him from attending performances.

Mr. Jackson was a member of VFW Post 2678 in Edgemere and belonged to St. Paul's Evangelical Lutheran Church. He also was an avid fisherman.

A memorial service will be held today at Fletcher Funeral Home, 254 E. Main St., Westminster.

In addition to his wife, he is survived by a son, Earl L. Jackson of Westminster; a daughter, Carol Ann Gossman of Annapolis; a sister, Katherine Younger of Baltimore; four grandchildren; and eight great-grandchildren.

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