Ahmed Hussein (Jim) Sheronick
Ahmed Hussein (Jim) Sheronick, 93, of Cedar Rapids, passed away Nov. 9, 2019. He was born June 10, 1926, in Jib Jenine, Lebanon, the son of Hussein Ali and Bader Sheronick. His father came to Cedar Rapids in 1895 and was the first Muslim to settle in Cedar Rapids as he helped many other Lebanese Muslims settle in Cedar Rapids thereafter.
His father returned to Lebanon to start a family,
and a young Ahmed heard many wonderful stories about America and the great people who lived there, inspiring him to come to Cedar Rapids in 1950 to live with his loving older sister and brother in law, Negebe and Ali Sheronick, and their children Sam and Amy, who owned a grocery store on L Street SW. Ahmed felt forever indebted to his "new" family who provided him a loving home and made it possible for him to learn English while working several jobs to put himself through Coe College where he graduated in 1956 with a B.A. degree in Economics. He taught Economics at Tulane University until he graduated from Tulane with a Masters in Economics in 1958. He was then employed by Prudential Insurance for over 50 years before retiring. Although he was a national top-tier salesman at Prudential for decades which enabled him to support his family well, he was most proud that he made his living honorably by helping his clients whom he also considered familyreach financial independence. "Always, always put the client first," was his mantra.
In 1961, Ahmed married his wife, Ghannia, also of Jib Jenine, Lebanon, and was proud and genuinely humbled to call her his wife for nearly 58 years. They provided a loving, kind, nurturing, and caring home for their three grateful children, sons Omar and Sam, and daughter Bedora.
Ahmed loved gardening and hunting and following his childrens' music, theater, and sports activities. He practiced yoga every morning, followed by cardio and weightlifting, teaching his family by example that exercising daily is as important as eating, sleeping, breathing, and prayer. He was a voracious reader, lifelong scholar, and seeker of truth and justice. He had a keen interest and understanding of world history, the religious history and texts of all faiths, the effects of colonialism, and international affairs. He had a passion for explaining the interrelations of such things to government officials and the general public whenever asked to speak publicly, which he hoped would educate and motivate people to help allay suffering throughout the world. As he would often say, "People do not revolt against fairness."
He was a member of the Cedar Rapids Islamic Center, where he served as a volunteer interim imam (clergy) off and on for many years. He was also proud to be a lifelong 32nd Degree Free Mason and member of the Scottish Rite.
Ahmed is survived by his family who feel eternally honored, proud, blessed, and privileged to call him "Dad": loving wife, Ghannia; their sons, Omar and Sam; their daughter, Bedora, and son-in-law, Kevin Papp, all of Cedar Rapids, along with many nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents; and sisters, Negebe, Necebe, Enoah; and brother, Mohammed.
His favorite poet, Kahlil Gibran, once wrote: "And when the Earth shall claim your limbs, then shall you truly dance." We look forward to dancing with you again, Dad.
A private burial service was held for the immediate family. A public memorial service for family and friends will begin at 1 p.m. Dec. 7, at the Cedar Rapids Islamic Center, located at 2999 First Ave. SW, Cedar Rapids, IA 52404.
Memorial donations may be made to the Cedar Rapids Islamic Center in his honor.