Jerry W. Jordak
This is my generic home page. I will admit that this page doesn't get
updated much, as most of my effort goes into my main web project, the
Penn Central Railroad Home Page.
I try to update this page when I can, though. Thank you for stopping by.
A little bit about me
I'm a 36-year old graduate of Case Western
Reserve University (Class of '96), living in northeast Ohio between
Cleveland and Akron. I work as a UNIX
systems administrator for KeyBank.
I have been blessed to have two loving parents, Jerry and Diane, who have
been married for over 35 years and loved me and brought me up right. Here's
a photo of my folks at home. (You can't tell any
resemblance between my father and I, can you?)
My dad was a school teacher for 31 years. He's now retired and works as
a retired school bus driver. When he's not at work or out hunting and fishing, you can
usually find him in his favorite position on the couch at home.
I also have a younger sister named Amy. She graduated from Mount Union College in May
2000, and is currently working for National City
Bank in Cleveland. She got married back in September 2003 to a great guy named Jim,
who I am fortunate to call my brother-in-law. Unfortunately, I don't have any photos of them to post.
More about me
Here are some of the things which make me tick:
- Trains and railroad photography: I have been interested in trains
every since I can remember.
- When I have time, I go out taking pictures of trains. This is known as "railfanning".
Some of my slides I have been published in Railpace
and Model Railroader magazines, and
I even have had three articles published in Railpace. I have been all over the country in pursuit of
my hobby, and you can read about some of my railfanning trips:
- New England: Massachusetts and Connecticut, February-March 1998
- East Coast: Connecticut, New York, and New Jersey, August-September 1998
- Philly and South Jersey: Southeastern Pennsylvania and southern New Jersey, May 1999
- New England: Massachusetts and Connecticut, May 2000
- Pennsylvania: Anthracite Country, May 2001
- Pennsylvania: Anthracite Country, June 2002
- Pennsylvania: Anthracite Country, October 2002
- Pennsylvania: Anthracite Country, June 2003
- Carolinas: Crescent Route, L&C, and Hamlet, November 2003
- PA and South Jersey: Southeastern Pennsylvania and southern New Jersey, May 2006
- PA, WV, and MD: Western Pennsylvania and the B&O from Cumberland east, September 2006
- I am a member of the Forest City Division of the Railroad Enthusiasts
in Cleveland, Ohio, and I am currently the club president and the editor of the club newsletter, The Mainline.
- My major web project is maintaining the Penn Central Railroad Home Page,
the largest Internet repository of historical information on the Penn Central Transportation Company.
- Not only do I have my own personal web site on the Penn Central, but I also am a founding member, trustee, and
webmaster of the Penn Central Railroad Historical Society
- Model Trains: Not only do I chase big trains, I also build little trains. I model in HO scale.
My layout is based on the Penn Central's
ex-Pennsylvania Railroad Erie & Pittsburgh Branch, circa 1969.
I am modeling a piece of railroad that I have never seen a mainline
train on in an era before I was born. I also operate on a number of other people's
model railroads. Here's some photos from our operating sessions:
- NASCAR Nextel Cup stock car racing:
For those of you who don't know, NASCAR racing has to be the most exciting sport
in America to watch. My favorite driver is Dale Eardhardt, Jr. I still miss watching his father on the racetrack...
- Football: When the NASCAR season is over, I become a pretty big football fan. I've been a fan of the
Cleveland Browns since I was young, but there's not been much to cheer with the Browns in the last few years.
Fortunately, I'm also a big fan of the San Diego Chargers, ever since watching Dan Fouts, Kellen Winslow,
Chuck Muncie, and Charlie Joiner running the "Air Coryell" offense back in the early 1980s. Now that
was football! Unfortunately, the Chargers didn't make the playoffs in 2005, but at least they had a shot, unlike the Browns.
I hope for both teams, though...
One time when I was at a conference in Dearborn, Michigan, I got to meet
James "Jumbo" Bacon from the Harlem Globetrotters. He and some of his
teammates were doing a basketball camp in the area and were staying at the
same hotel I was at. I met him outside of the ballroom one night...he just
came to me and started talking, and soon a couple of my friends joined the
conversation, and we must have chit-chatted for the better part of an hour.
I remembered when I first met him that I thought "this guy is really tall,"
but we only found out later in the conversation that he played basketball
for the Globetrotters.
The next morning Jumbo and his teammates were leaving for their next
destination, so he invited me to stop down in the lobby as they were
leaving. It was 6:00 AM and I didn't get much sleep the night before, but
I went down to say goodbye anyway. He gave me and my friends each an
autographed team picture and I got my picture taken with him.
(I'm 6'3", so you can see how tall he his--he makes me look short! The 6:00 AM time
also explains why I look half-asleep in the picture...) I don't think Jumbo is playing
for the Globetrotters anymore, but I'm sure whatever he is
doing now, he's still making people smile.
Links of interest to me
- Quaker Steak and Lube -- This
restaurant in Sharon, Pennsylvania (along the railroad that I'm modeling)
is known for having the best wings in America. I try to go there every
couple months. I would go more often, but it's an hour and a half drive
from Cleveland. If you think I'm nuts to drive that far for wings, you obviously
haven't tasted them.... But now I don't have to drive that far anymore, because
they opened one in the Cleveland area! Wings every week for me now!
- Interstate Highway System
-- Anything you wanted to know about the concrete ribbons that cross America.
Want to chat? Drop me a note.
Last updated: May 11, 2006.