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Otho E. Kerr, Jr.

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Thank you for your support during this difficult time. Please enhance this tribute to Otho by adding your memories and photos.

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Joyce Funeral Home

245 Main Street
Waltham, MA 02453
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Memories & Candles

“My deepest sympathy to the family for your loss. ”
1 of 40 | Posted by: Natalia Corres - Bakersfield, CA

“I can see Mr. Kerr there at our high school track meets cheering Otho, Greg adn the team on. So sorry for your loss. My thoughts and prayers are...Read More »
2 of 40 | Posted by: Keith Venuti - Derry, NH

“I love you. ”
3 of 40 | Posted by: Otho Kerr III - NY - Son

“Julia, Mary, Otho, and Greg, Our deepest condolences on the passing of your beloved husband and father. I remember last seeing Mr. Kerr as he...Read More »
4 of 40 | Posted by: Barbara Doucette - Waltham, MA

“My thoughts and prayers are with you at this difficult time. Keep your heart full of wonderful memories and celebrate the person he helped you...Read More »
5 of 40 | Posted by: Mary Duddy Nagengast - Omaha, NE

“My deepest condolences to the Kerr family on the loss of your beloved husband and father. His legacy lives on in his wonderful children and in the...Read More »
6 of 40 | Posted by: Mary Coyle - Beavercreek, OH

“Dear Mrs. Kerr, Mary, Otho and Gregory, So sorry to hear of the passing of your dad. May The Lord bless and comfort you in this sad time. ...Read More »
7 of 40 | Posted by: Linda Nahigian

“Dear Aunt Julia, Mary, Greg and Otho, I have such fond memories of seeing Uncle Otho over the holidays. Growing up, he always treated me with...Read More »
8 of 40 | Posted by: Philip Eure - Washington, DC

“The Kerr family, I'm so sorry to hear of Otho. My thoughts and prayers are with you all. May the Lord provide you with comfort. In sympathy and...Read More »
9 of 40 | Posted by: Edward Tucker - MA

“I always enjoyed those short interchanges with your dad, Mary, his perceptive replies in conversation. Although my contact with him was rare, I will...Read More »
10 of 40 | Posted by: Margie Smith Talacko - Georgetown, MA

“Dear Mrs Kerr and Family - I regret that I only know the remarkable Craig I wish I had known Otho as we had a connection thru RADAR. I took the...Read More »
11 of 40 | Posted by: Bob Vaucher - Bridgewater, NJ, NJ

“Dear Greg & Family, I'm so sorry to hear of your loss. Your father sounds like he was a wonderful man. I hope all of the gifts he bestowed upon you...Read More »
12 of 40 | Posted by: Samantha Brenner - New York, NY

“Otho - Your Dad had to be a wonderful person to have reared a man like you. A day won't go by that you won't think of him. Isn't it nice that people...Read More »
13 of 40 | Posted by: Karen Dewar - Erwinna, PA

“Greg, I just learned the sad news about your Dad. He sounded like a wonderful man who will be sorely missed by all of you. My deepest...Read More »
14 of 40 | Posted by: Susan Faggiani - New York, NY

“What a lovely photo tribute to Mr. Kerr! I had the great fortune of spending lots of high school time at the Kerrs' home on Lincoln Terrace; many...Read More »
15 of 40 | Posted by: Trish Dunham Meyer - Gloucester, MA

“Greg and Family, My heart goes out to you all. I never met your father but I feel as if I knew him. Greg and I shared many stories of our families...Read More »
16 of 40 | Posted by: Ralph Slepian - New York, NY

“To the entire Kerr family, you are in my heart and prayers at this difficult time. His legacy is his incredible children and beloved wife, and in the...Read More »
17 of 40 | Posted by: Debi Gardiner - Worcester, MA

“Thank you for two wonderful sons i was lucky enough to perform with and share a part of my life with. God bless you and your family in this time of...Read More »
18 of 40 | Posted by: Beryl Rochatka - Orlando, FL

“Brother Kerr was a distinguished gentleman who always brought energy to our Boston Alumni Chapter and a great consciousness of our roles and...Read More »
19 of 40 | Posted by: Maurice B. Wrightg - Boston, MA

“I am honored to know the Otho family. My Mom Connie and my sons Nick and Coby send love your way. Mr. Kerr was an inspration and dear man. He was a...Read More »
20 of 40 | Posted by: Lisa Eure - Bedford, MA

“Mrs. Kerr, Mary, Otho, & Greg, I am so saddened to hear of the passing of Otho. May God comfort you and guide you in the coming days. He was a...Read More »
21 of 40 | Posted by: Jeanne Nadeau - Lehigh Acres, FL

“I know that Otho was a wonderful guy based on the character of his two outstanding sons that I know who are special in my life. He leaves a...Read More »
22 of 40 | Posted by: Bruce Whipple - South Kent , CT

“To Mrs. Kerr and Family, We were so sorry to hear of Mr, Kerr's passing. My Mother and I and our family extend our condolences. You are in our...Read More »
23 of 40 | Posted by: Gail Frieburger - Clinton, MA

“My sincere condolences to all of you. Greg and Otho, I hope you remember my twin sister, Laura and I were in violin lessions with you. Always had...Read More »
24 of 40 | Posted by: Mary Callahan - waltham, MA

“To the entire Kerr Family, Warn condolences from Helene Innes, parishioner and family friend from Christ Church, and Maureen King, classmate 1975...Read More »
25 of 40 | Posted by: Helene Innes & Maureen King

“The Kerr Family friendship has been a blessing in my Mother's Life since her childhood in West Virginia through to the present time. Rest in Peace...Read More »
26 of 40 | Posted by: Mrs CynthiaPoindexter Gregory - OH

Emma Poindexter with daughter and son in law Cynthia Poindexter Gregory and Tony Gregory “The Kerr Family friendship has been a blessing in my Mother's Life since her childhood in West Virginia through to the present time. Rest in Peace...Read More »
27 of 40 | Posted by: Mrs Cynthia poindexter Gregory - OH

“Dear Mrs. Kerr, Gregory, Otho and family - I was so sad when I heard about Otho. I have such lovely memories of him just "popping in" to say hi and...Read More »
28 of 40 | Posted by: Ann Ormond - Newburyport, MA

“I never had the privilege of meeting Mr. Kerr, but if a man can be judged by the family he has helped to raise, he must have been a wonderfully kind...Read More »
29 of 40 | Posted by: Brian Oakes - New York , NY

“My condolences to the Kerr family. Mr Kerr was a fine gentleman and good patient. I wish I knew him longer but I do know the rest of the family. ...Read More »
30 of 40 | Posted by: Russell Hagopian - Lexington, MA

“Dear Greg and Family, I so enjoyed hearing your stories of your father. Your affection, love and admiration for him radiated from you every time...Read More »
31 of 40 | Posted by: Trish Mackl - New York, NY

“I remember what a great person Mr. Kerr was during all the school years of my life. I feel blessed to have known him, mrs. Kerr, Mary and the boys. ...Read More »
32 of 40 | Posted by: Susanne Morreale Leeber - MA

“Dear Mrs. Kerr, Mary, Otho and Greg, I am so sorry to hear of Mr. Kerr's illness and death. My recollections of him are of a warm, gentle, kind...Read More »
33 of 40 | Posted by: Beth Crane - Montgomery, VT

“I've known Mr. Kerr since 1960. As the father of my childhood best friend, Mary, I always knew him as a standard bearer of grace, warmth, and good...Read More »
34 of 40 | Posted by: Elizabeth (Betsy) Keir - Berkeley, CA

“Dear Julia, Mary, Otho and Greg, I am so saddened to read of Otho's death, such a wonderful man. Fr. Bill and Otho had such good fun together, I...Read More »
35 of 40 | Posted by: Jackie Mawhinney - Waltham, MA

“Please accept my deepest condolences on the passing of your dear Otho. I have the greatest admiration and respect for yout family. He will be greatly...Read More »
36 of 40 | Posted by: Jerry Walker - Waltham, MA

“Dear Greg and the whole Kerr family, I am so sorry to hear this. I have followed with you your father's slowly increasing health problems and it...Read More »
37 of 40 | Posted by: Pavel Illner - New York, NY

“Otho,Greg and family, I am so sorry to hear of the loss of your dad. I have viewed the photos of you and your family and observed the love amongst...Read More »
38 of 40 | Posted by: Jean Conti - Waltham, MA

“I met Mr. and Mrs Kerr when Otho and I started Harvard Law and roomed together as 1L's. I was always impressed with Mr. Kerr's gentle demeanor, his...Read More »
39 of 40 | Posted by: Thomas Tullo - Staten Island, NY

“i am a friend of otho's son greg, because he raised such a great son, he must have been a great man. ”
40 of 40 | Posted by: howard koff - NY


Waltham – Mr. Otho E. Kerr, Jr., a resident of Waltham for fifty-five years, died Monday, November 7, 2011. He was 87.

A native of Chicago, Otho was born on July 19, 1924 to Otho E., Sr. and Mary E. (Brown) Kerr and raised in the historic Rosenwald Apartment Building. After graduating from Englewood High School and spending his freshman year of college at Illinois Institute of Technology he joined the United States Army in order to serve his nation in World War II in North Africa and Italy.

After the war he enrolled at West Virginia State College, graduating in 1950. He met his loving wife Julia C. (Jones) Kerr while they were at West Virginia State. After graduation, he did post-graduate work at Northwestern University and at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In 1951, he began a thirty-five year career working as a research physicist at the United States Air Force Cambridge Research Laboratory, which ultimately moved to Hanscom Air Force Base in Bedford. His career involved a pioneering role in the tracking of Sputnik 1 and participation in the development of the U.S. Strategic Defense Initiative. As a result of his work, he became a member of Sigma Xi Scientific Research Society, which honors excellence in scientific research.

Otho was an active member of his community. When they first moved to Waltham in the 1950's, Otho and Julia were active in the Fair Housing movement. Otho, formerly a member of First Baptist Church in Waltham, was a member of Christ Church Episcopal in Waltham for the past twenty years. He was a longtime member of the Waltham Lions Club where he became a Melvin Jones Fellow for his humanitarian service. He was also a longtime member of the board of directors of the Waltham Boys and Girls Club for which he was awarded the Walter and Margaret Abbott Community Service Award. Otho was a member of the Boston chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi, for which he received the 50 Year Merit Award, the Outlook Club, the Piety Corner Club, and the Charles River Museum, where he helped to develop the computer lab.

In addition to his wife Julia of 61 years, he leaves his children, Mary E. Kerr of Waltham, Otho E. Kerr, III and Gregory E. Kerr, both of New York City.

Family and friends will honor and remember Otho's life by gathering for calling hours in The Joyce Funeral Home, 245 Main Street (Rte. 20), Waltham on Friday, November 11th, from 4 to 8 p.m. and again at 11:30 a.m. on Saturday morning in Christ Church, 750 Main Street, Waltham when his funeral service will be held. The Rev. Sara H. Irwin will officiate. Burial will be in Newton Cemetery.

Memorial donations may be made to Christ Church, 750 Main Street, Waltham, MA 02451 or to Dana Farber Cancer Institute, 450 Brookline Avenue, Boston, MA 02215 and at www.dana-farber.org/.