Jean (JM) Kerr – 1924 – 2019

Jean Kerr at 2008 Reunion with Bryan Kerr and Katherine Yagel [James Andrew Hewitt]

Longtime resident of West Linn, Oregon, Jean Milton (JM) Kerr passed away January 6, 2019. We invite you to join us for his Memorial Service from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Saturday, July 6, 2019, at his childhood “homestead,” 5620 High Heaven Road, McMinnville, OR 97128, west of McMinnville. A potluck will start at 10:30, followed by the service at 1:00.
Jean was Henry and Sylva Kerr’s seventh child, and was born July 9, 1924, on Grand Island near Dayton, Oregon. He died of natural causes at the age of 94, the last to pass of eight siblings. He was survived by his wife of 67 years, Catherine; his five children, Bruce, Barbara, Bryan, Bradley and Brent; 10
grandchildren; and eight great-grandchildren. Catherine followed him, passing on May 11, 2019.
Jean was born of a true Oregon pioneer mother and raised on the land his parents homesteaded in 1929 west of McMinnville. He graduated from Benson Polytechnic High School in Portland prior to entering the Marine Corps. Like many of his generation, his life was strongly influenced by military service. Jean served in the 1st Marine Division during WWII, and was part of the landing forces on both Peleliu and Okinawa. He fought on Peleliu in 1944 (of the Palau Islands), Okinawa in 1945, and  China in 1946.
Upon returning to civilian life, Jean made his living in the logging and construction industries and evolved to running his own business, JM Kerr Logging and Construction. He met his love, Catherine Wollett; they married in 1952 and raised their family in West Linn.
He was actively involved in community service as West Linn grew, contributing to local schools, participating in politics, leading fundraising for the March of Dimes, Boy Scout Troop 149 West Linn, as a founding member of N.W. Scots Guards, an active member in the VFW post in Lake Oswego, and Lions, and educating grade school and high school students about his WWII experience through Living History programs. He was constant in his commitment to neighbors and family in time of need, one example being the 1962 Columbus Day Storm.
He is missed. 

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