Thinking of you today . . . October 17, 2014
Just to share a few words from Joe, for his birthday.
Letter dated January 28, 2008
Dear Kae and Family, Thanks so much for the article by John. He is so right, we as a country are in bad shape and in Michigan, the auto industry is slowly but surely breaking the Union. They are down grading everything, but the very top few. Then hiring the few skilled workers they need at half of a wage and cutting out their health benefits.
I wish I could say things are better today. Maybe the young folks in the Occupy Protests might move us forward for the working class.
Memorial Page Honoring Joe
Because Joe gave so much to our family research project, I created this additional page for letters, pictures, documents and tribute videos about Joe and his family. Joe would have celebrated his 87th birthday on October 17, 2011.
I’ve just started on this page, and if family members would like to forward additional photographs and other materials to add to the collection, please send those along. I would like to add recent family pictures, especially of all of the grandchildren and families.
Early Family Photographs
William and Rose Kerr
Kerr Brothers C1936
Kerr Family Military History
Bloomfield Hills Police Department
The Passing Song
The Oakland Press
Our trip to Michigan in Fall of 2009 was one of our most remarkable journeys because not only did we cover 1,400 miles, we felt as if we were going back through time. Joe shared so much information regarding our family and especially of our homestead on Sand Ridge Road in Stalwart. Joe showed us where we could find that gravel road where our great-grandparent’s farm house still rests, and although I’ve visited other abandoned houses, what was so moving was to know the stories behind those four walls.
I certainly have regrets that I didn’t start the family research project sooner. I sincerely wish that time would have permitted us to reconnect with Joe before the last year of his life. I have saved all of his letters, and I find myself rereading them from time to time. In one of his last letters, Joe wrote,
I don’t know how many more birthdays I will have, but you there and my family have given me the best birthday in 87 years.
Frequently I think of Joe and of his many kindnesses and encouragement, and he still inspires me to treasure connections to family.
Before the funeral service, Jean and I stopped by Joe’s house to have one more moment there before saying goodbye. In a letter from October 2009 Joe wrote, “I must close now, my birds and animals are waiting for their breakfast.”
Scott and Matthew: A Moving Tribute to their Grandfather, May 11, 2010