Jerry Sayre is the Fallbrook Historical Society Pioneer of the Year, 2023. Born and raised in Fallbrook, Jerry has seen our village blossom and grow over a period of 7 decades. He is regarded as the Historian of Fallbrook.
His father and an uncle were partners in Sayre Market located on Main Street from1940-1957. His dad was the butcher.
Jerry was exposed to music at a young age. He listened to his dad sing in a Barber Shop Quartet in Fallbrook. Music was always a big part of his life: band, chorus and choir. In his senior year at Fallbrook High School, Jerry was the Drum Major in the school’s marching band. His band uniform is on display in our museum.
After high school he went into the grocery business. At the age of 30 Jerry followed his dream – performing music. He formed a local band called Showdown with 3 of his musically inclined buddies. They performed throughout Southern California for 14 years focusing on rock and country western music. Jerry sang lead and played the bass.
After his dad’s death he developed a curiosity about his ancestry. He’s now traced many generations, including the arrival of Thomas Sayre arriving in Boston in 1638. Today Jerry is a Certified Ancestry Researcher and a Semi Professional Genealogist. Jerry’s memberships in Hereditary Societies are as follows:
- Sons of American Revolution
- Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War
- General Society War of 1812
- Society of Colonial Wars
- Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States
Jerry has been a member of the Sons of the American Revolution for 30 years and has held the offices of Chapter Genealogist and two terms as president in the Eagle Chapter. He has also served as Department Commander and four terms as Camp Commander of the Sgt. William Pittenger Camp No.21 Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War.
Fallbrook history has been a lifetime interest for Jerry Sayre. He collects historical photos that he analyzes. Over the years he has frequently shared his memorabilia and his firsthand knowledge with FHS historians and docents. Jerry has also volunteered his time and material to clean up the Odd Fellows cemetery. Without fanfare, he has repaired and painted plot fencing of many historical plots. Sayre led the renovation of Sgt. Pittenger’s Medal of Honor gravesite in 2020.
Jerry is still seen in many of the Fallbrook parades in his Civil War uniform representing veterans of the Civil War. When younger he played “Taps” at the Masonic Cemetery. Now he’s the speaker on Memorial Day.
Jerry recently retired from Joe’s Hardware, after 20 years as the paint guru. Doesn’t everyone recognize Jerry?