Jesse Perrigo

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord” Jeremiah 29:11 
Jesse Perrigo of Rapid City, S.D., 43, passed away Aug. 9, 2020 after a valiant battle with a brain tumor. God’s plan, his love of family, friends, baseball and the Detroit Red Wings paired with a quick wit and strong opinion, led him to experiences he never imagined growing up in Custer, S.D. 
Born in Chadron, Neb., Jesse was the first of three boys and spent a lot of time shaking his head at his two younger brothers’ antics. His parents, Russ and Carol Perrigo, raised the boys with strong values, a passion for the Atlanta Braves and a wooden spoon. Life changed in an instant in the close-knit family and small community when Jesse’s brother, Matt, and Matt’s friend, Adam Kaufman, were killed in a car accident in high school. Matt was forever on his mind and Jesse enjoyed sharing memories of “Rupert’s” inventive ideas and goofy adventures. 
Jesse held a variety of jobs: computers, financial planning, whatever he thought might prove interesting and pay the bills, but in 2005 his restless search for God’s plan pushed him to take a position teaching English in Taiwan. After getting bumped by a grocery cart pushed by a feisty, pretty woman from the Philippines in a huge food mart in a city of millions, life changed. Vanesa Asis and Jesse became husband and wife and Jesse became the “tall guy” in family photos with his beloved Philippine in-laws, Willy, who has since passed; Mama Cherie and Vanesa’s sister, Maricel; along with a huge extended family. Jesse relished time spent with his brother and sister-in-law, Adam and Santa Perrigo and his beloved nephews, Eiden and Evan. He delighted in relating stories of their days, a proud uncle.
Anyone blessed to be considered a friend of Jesse’s knew his opinion of politics, sports, morality and where to find the best Orange Chicken as he and Vanesa tested every Chinese restaurant they came across.
Jesse’s quick mind, droll and sarcastic sense of humor kept everyone who loved him on their toes. He had lifelong friends he played with as a toddler, along with others he attended school with, met at seminars, traveled with, met on a train somewhere in Asia, church friends and the nurse friends who cared for him his final year. He appreciated all his parents did for him and never failed to tell them so. Vanesa was his soulmate from the day she “bumped” into him and he loved her with his entire being. A life well lived. 
A Celebration of Jesse’s Life, with a live stream available, will be held Saturday, Sept. 5, at 10 a.m., Fountain Springs Church, N. Plaza Drive in Rapid City, followed by a luncheon at Old Storybook Island Park.

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