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David Harkness Jerrett

David H. Jerrett, 64,  of Mill Road, Ipswich, husband of Linzee (Parker) Jerrett, died Friday December 18, 2009 in the Beverly Hospital of complications from bladder cancer. 

He was born in Patuxent River, MD on December 23, 1944, the son of the late Robert and Hope (Harkness) Jerrett .

Educated at Exeter, Brown University, and SUNY Buffalo, David was a renaissance man. A lifelong scholar, he was well-versed in Water’s history of Ipswich, and spent the last years of his life working on a history of Mill Road. He had a passion for genealogy and was also working on a biography of his ancestor Aaron Dwight Stevens, who fought alongside abolitionist  John Brown.  In addition to his historical writing, David was an accomplished poet and could provide verses for every occasion from the satiric to the lyrical.  Music, too, was an important voice for him. He had a fine baritone and played the guitar.

David lived in Ipswich for 30 years and, as one acquaintance observed, he embodied the best of small town living. A stop for milk could lead to a half-hour conversation about anything from town affairs to philosophy -- almost everywhere he went he was greeted by name.

In his working life, he was a gifted woodworker whose cabinetry embellished many North Shore homes.  The same talent for woodworking also built several boats. He was an avid sailor and relished any opportunity to get out on the water.

In addition to Linzee, his wife of thirty-four years, he is survived by his children Kim Opratko-Jerrett of Vienna, Austria, David H. Jerrett Jr. of Vienna and San Francisco CA, Eliza G. Jerrett of Ipswich, and three grandchildren.

A celebration of his life will be held at a later date.

Arrangements are under the direction of the Whittier-Porter Funeral Home of Ipswich.


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