Jerry William Ellisberg

by | Jul 12, 2019 | Obituaries

Raleigh, N.C.—Jerry William Ellisberg, 80 years old, of Raleigh, N.C., peacefully passed after a battle with cancer on Saturday, June 15, 2019 at his home surrounded by family and loved ones.

Jerry was born on April 13, 1939 at Rex Hospital, when it was located on Wade Avenue and St. Mary’s Street, to parents Mortimer and Mildred Ellisberg. He attended Ravenscroft and Broughton High Schools, and graduated from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 1961, with a degree in Metallurgical Engineering.

Ignoring this completely, Jerry spent time “Kerouac-ing” across the country, and insists that records and memories of these times were sparse. He returned to his hometown to take over the family clothing atelier, Ellisberg’s, located in the historic Cameron Village underground. He married Pamela Ballentine, nee Butler, and had two incredibly talented, wonderful, and modest children: Lauren (born 1984) and Eric (born 1990), whom he raised (mildly) successfully in the age of the Internet.

He met his life partner, Judy Wittstein, as she walked down the street in Wilmington, N. C., and insisted that she get into his car. After she realized he wasn’t a murderer, just tactless, they forged a relationship that would span over 17 years. They shared a home in North Raleigh, where Judy cared for him through his many battles with cancer, and in the aftermath of the 2016 presidential election.

Jerry will be dearly remembered for his philanthropic spirit, his love of tennis, and his cantankerous relationship with everything else. He will be mourned by family and friends throughout the world, especially his sister, Barbara Abielle, of Avignon et Provence, France.

Memorials to the ACLU of North Carolina, PO Box 28004 Raleigh, NC 27611.