Remembering Dr. Kerry Kilpatrick
It is with a very heavy heart that I inform you the Kerry Kilpatrick, who was our Department Chair from 1987-2003, passed away this past Wednesday, February 2. I had the privilege of getting to know and work with Kerry when I was at Duke and the Department of Veterans Affairs. Kerry recruited many of our senior faculty, including me, to the Department. It was as one of his faculty that I truly recognized his visionary leadership. Kerry also was an incredible instructor and mentor to our students as he taught an operations research course that was required of all our masters’ students. To me, one sentence in his obituary (below) captures Kerry best: “Kerry will be remembered for his humble, gentle spirit, his generosity, creativity, curiosity, love, tinkering, patience and humor.” For those of you who had the good fortune to have known Kerry, I ask that you take a moment to reflect on what he meant to you. And I hope you keep his family in your thoughts and prayers as they deal with his loss.
Obituary for Kerry Edwards Kilpatrick
Dr. Kerry Edwards Kilpatrick moved on to his eternal resting place on February 2, 2022. He is deeply loved and missed by those who knew, shared life, and learned from him. Born in Baltimore, MD on March 17, 1939, Kerry grew up in Detroit, Michigan.
Kerry was a loving husband, father and grandfather, a generous provider, a brilliant scholar, educator, manager, researcher, adviser, and mentor. He received his undergraduate and post graduate degrees from the University of Michigan and Harvard University. In his long and distinguished academic career, Kerry was a Professor in the School of Engineering at the University of Florida, a Robert Woods Johnson Fellow, a consultant for the Veterans Administration, the Chairman of the Department of Health Policy and Administration at the University of North Carolina School of Public Health, and a distinguished Professor Emeritus. He retired from UNC in 2006 after serving as the School of Public Health’s Associate Dean of Academic Affairs. He spent his retirement years in Navarre, Florida where he continued to contribute his time and talents volunteering on advisory boards for Baptist Health Care and tutoring math at the Navarre High School.
Kerry will be remembered for his humble, gentle spirit, his generosity, creativity, curiosity, love, tinkering, patience and humor. He had a passion for sailing, restoring British sports cars and he loved living on Florida’s coastal waters. He was an avid reader who enjoyed participating in a local American History Book Club.
Kerry is survived by his loving wife Katherine, his beloved sons Andy (Kathryn Rhodes) and Jeff (Jennifer Clark) Kilpatrick and their mother Ellen. He cherished and was so proud of his grandchildren Nicholas, Owen, Bridget, Lauren, and Ian. He is also survived by his sister-in-law Linda Kilpatrick, brother-in-law Steve LaPan (Lynn), sisters-in-law Linda LaPan, and Barb Zukin, brother-in-law Pat Nearing and several nieces and nephews. Kerry was predeceased by his mother Elsa Kalwa, his father Stanley and his brother James Kilpatrick.
Those wishing to remember Kerry can make a donation to a charity of their choosing.