Dennis 'Dink' Jerome passed away July 31, 2002, at his residence in Hoopeston, Ill., following a lengthy battle with cancer.
Dennis' love for steam engines developed at a very young age, and he could be found attending engine shows with his friend and mentor, Harry 'Pink' Woodmansee, who teasingly gave him the name 'Dink' for riding around on a 'dinky gas tractor' at a steam show.
He bought his first engine, a Port Huron, at an auction in Iowa when he was 17 years old. In later years he purchased a 20 HP Minneapolis and a 20 HP Advance-Rumely.
In his travels as a steam engine enthusiast his life was blessed with many friends and experiences throughout the country. His legacy lives on in the numerous stories and tales he so happily shared with those who were fortunate enough to hear them.
Dennis led the parade at the National Sweet Corn Festival in Hoopeston, Ill., for 26 years, and he was the show announcer for the Michigan Steam Engine and Threshermans Club for several years. He was a member of the Illiana Antique Power Association, the National Threshers Association, a 25-year member and Past Master of Star Lodge #709 AF&AM and an honorary member of the Hoopeston Jaycees.
Submitted by Stephen and Jeremiah Eyrich, Hoopeston, Ill.