Jerry Dean Bloom, 77, head of the Santa Clarita Valley Salvation Army location, died April 18, 2020, from cancer.
Bloom is remembered as the officer-in-charge of the Salvation Army and is described by those who knew him best as a warm and inspirational leader.
"His words and what he said could inspire you to better and to do more things," said Bob Wachsmuth, a near decade-long volunteer at the Salvation Army. "Because of him, I joined the Salvation Army, and a lot of other people did, too."
Bloom was born in Los Angeles on February 1, 1943, to Rev. Robert E. "Bob" Bloom (1923-2002) and Frances Rose (Cottriel) Bloom (1923-2017). Jerry Bloom moved to the Santa Clarita Valley with his parents in 1959 and graduated from Hart High School in 1961.
When he was 17, Bloom enlisted in the U.S. Navy but needed his mother's permission to do so.
He later became an ordained minister and served in that capacity for 59 years, his widow, Laura (Dipaola) Bloom, said.
Since 1996, Jerry served in the Salvation Army in its various social service, adult drug and alcohol rehabilitation and spiritual programs. He served in the Salvation Army in Carpinteria, Riverside and Hanford, City of Commerce, Canoga Park and Ventura, in both support and leadership roles.
Six years ago, Jerry and wife Laura accepted an appointment as leaders of The Salvation Army Santa Clarita Valley Corps, located at 22935 Lyons Avenue. Their task was to strengthen and expand the Salvation Army's little-known but effective programs here in the SCV.
"Jerry was the happiest when he served people in the name of the Lord," said Laura.
City Councilman Bob Kellar has worked with the Salvation Army and the Blooms for years. Kellar said Bloom had been battling his cancer for more than year.
"Jerry, along with his wife Laura, they made a huge impact on the Salvation Army here in Santa Clarita," he said. "Through their leadership, all services were increased."
Wachsmuth said Bloom was the leader of the entire operation at the Salvation Army and ran it like a church, with himself as the pastor. However, according to Wachsmuth, Bloom did not care what your faith was, but rather what type of person you are.
"He was a very warm, inspirational man," said Wachsmuth.
Bloom is survived by his wife, Laura, and his two younger siblings, Andrea Danielle "Candy" Veluzat and Richard Paul "Rick" Bloom, a pastor at a Christian church in Lompoc.
Mortuary services are being handled by Eternal Valley Memorial Park in Newhall. Public services are not yet scheuduled.
Genealogical information provided by Tricia Lemon Putnam.