Jerome William O’Laughlin

Jerome William O’Laughlin, 90, of Columbia passed away Tuesday, February 2, 2021 at the Bluffs.

Jerome (Jerry) was born February 25, 1930 in Shakopee, MN to William and Margaret (O’Brien) O’Laughlin.  He attended the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, MN where he received his bachelor’s degree in Chemistry.

He was offered a position with the Ames, Iowa Laboratory of the United States Atomic Energy Commission in 1952 and moved there with his new wife Marjorie (Nikki) Hirscher O’Laughlin. While working for the Atomic Energy Commission he attended graduate classes at Iowa State University, where he earned his MS & Doctorate Degree in Organic Chemistry. Jerry was a member of the Sigma Xi honor society, belonged to numerous professional organizations, and had considerable experience directing and conducting research.

In 1970 Jerry moved his family to Columbia, MO where he began his teaching and research career at the University of Missouri in the Department of Chemistry. During his 20+ years as a faculty member at Mizzou & his 19 years at IA State University he authored or contributed to more than fifty research articles and book chapters and provided mentoring for many graduate and undergraduate students.

Jerry enjoyed photography, golfing, swimming, fishing, reading, and traveling.  He and his wife Nikki traveled to China, Canada, Eastern and Western portions of Europe, and various areas of interest in the U.S.

He was proceeded in death by his parents, brother Tom O’Laughlin and sister Peggy McElligott.

Jerry is survived by his wife Nikki O’Laughlin; sister Mary Ann Cotton; 7 children: Anne O’Laughlin Fayetteville AR, Mary (Brad) Stubbs Ashland MO, Kathy O’Laughlin Columbia MO, Mike O’Laughlin St. Charles MO, Pat O’Laughlin Columbia MO John (Laina) O’Laughlin Columbia MO and Liz (Brad Brubaker) O’Laughlin Terre Haute IN; 9 grandchildren: Aidan (NerMoo) Kunkle, Eleta (Dustin) Hillyer, Justin (Erin) Stubbs, Lynze (Levi) Soderstrom, Seth O’Laughlin, Quin O’Laughlin, Zoe O’Laughlin, Ben Brubaker, Lydia Brubaker; 9 great grandchildren: Cecilia Kunkle, Amzi Kunkle, Jaxson Hillyer, Lucas Hillyer, Parker Stubbs, Emma Stubbs, Xavier Stubbs, Odin Soderstrom, Erik Soderstrom.

Due to COVID 19 a service will be held at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church at a later date.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association.


  1. Maureen on February 5, 2021 at 12:52 pm

    Please let me know of service date. I want to be there. Jerry was a big influence in my life growing up. Please keep me in loop about arrangements

  2. Maggie Morgan on February 7, 2021 at 12:30 pm

    We are so sorry to learn of Jerry’s passing. Your family is in our prayers.
    Maggie and Clyde Morgan

  3. Michael Harmata on February 8, 2021 at 10:21 am

    Condolences to the entire family. May Jerry rest in peace. Mike Harmata

  4. Storvick on February 10, 2021 at 3:51 pm

    My kids (?) join me in sending our sympathy. Have tried to reach Nikki by phone….has she changed numbers? I don’t have numbers for any of you. We shared Minnesota, Iowa State andMissouri memories with your folks. My phone is still 445-4038. Please let me know when you plan a service. With love, Lynn

  5. Judy Snyder on February 11, 2021 at 5:12 pm

    I am sorry to learn of Jerry’s passing. My condolences to Nikki and the whole family. Thinking of you at this time. Judy Snyder (wife of Mike Harmata)

  6. John Spooner on June 18, 2021 at 12:00 pm

    Jerry will be greatly missed. Lot’s of fond memories.

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