Eric Anderson

By | February 12, 2019

Eric Anderson of Jackson, Ohio, age 66, died Friday, Feb. 8, 2019 at home from complications related to cancer and a stroke. He was born Dec. 17, 1952 in Chicago, Illinois.

Eric died at his Hammertown Road home (nicknamed “The Ridge”) with his favorite person in the world, his wife, Mary (nee Ondera). He also is survived by his daughters, Rebecca (Patrick) Prescott and Rachael (Larry) Rafferty; grandchildren, Derek Rafferty, Alex Rafferty, and Elsa Petersen; brothers and sisters-in-law by marriage: Dave (Linda) Ondera, Mike (Susan) Ondera, Dan (Becky) Ondera, Rob (Pam) Ondera, Paul (Pam) Ondera, Chris (Sharon) Ondera, and Jon (Bev) Ondera.

 He was preceded in death by his parents, Viking and Mary Anderson; a sister who died at childbirth; and his father and mother-in-law, Andy and Marge Ondera.

Known to many as “wildman,” “E-Man,” “hunk,” or “brother-in-law by marriage,” Eric Anderson built an incredible village of people around him. Never one to sit still, he loved to ride Amtrak across the United States with Mary, seeing the landscapes change with the gentle churn of the train car. He hated flying. Repeat. Hated flying. He also loved to drive. If he couldn’t take a train, he’d drive. Except for the time that he took Mary to Alaska. His second home was the Franklin Valley Golf Course, where you could find him most. He loved golf and the comraderies that came with it at the 19th hole. Eric never met a stranger! Ask anyone who was the subject of the photos he took for the Jackson Apple Festival! He’d talk to anyone, and that person always left with a smile from one of his wacky stories (like the time he spilled beer on Bill Gates at some conference somewhere). Eric also loved technology and computers; Iowa Hawkeye Football, and Basketball; and he was a friend of Bill W.

Professionally, Eric built a career in library science across the Midwest that started as the high school librarian at Dakota High School in Dakota, Illinois in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Next, he worked at the State Library of Iowa and the Sioux City Public Library. In 1987, he moved to Ohio to serve as executive director of Ohio Valley Area Libraries, a bookmobile and books-by-mail service, based in Wellston. His last career stop was at the Piketon Gaseous Diffusion Plant, working as an archivist and record keeper. He also was the author and creator of the Wired Librarians Newsletter, a subscription newsletter containing library and technology news with his peers.

There will be a memorial service to celebrate his life at a later date. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to: Heartland Hospice Services, 404 E Huron St., Jackson, OH 45640. Funeral arrangements are under the direction of the Lewis & Gillum Funeral Home of Jackson. Online condolences may be sent to