Mr Jack Kerr

Mr Jack Kerr, of Rocks Road, Ballyhornan, was a quiet, unassuming man, who lived a full and active life. He was 83 and passed away peacefully at his home on January 4.

Jack was born in Kilclief, the second youngest of a family of 13 — six boys and seven girls — to Charles and Mary Kerr.

He started his education at St Malachy’s Primary School, Kilclief, then attended St Patrick’s Grammar School, Downpatrick, and Downpatrick Technical College.

He was a plasterer by trade, but progressed to being a small-time builder and ended his career as the licensee of a pub.

As a young man he and four of his brothers played hurling for Kilclief and all five were on the team that reached the Down Senior Hurling Championship final in 1956.

Jack had a great love of the outdoors. He enjoyed rough shooting and paid for his first car with the proceeds of rabbits which he shot and sold to a butcher from Castlewellan.

His main interest was sailing. He was an RYA accredited Yachtmaster and taught children to sail at Seaboard Sailing Centre in Killyleagh.

He sailed to Scotland, the Isle of Man, twice to the Continent and circumnavigated Ireland on two occasions.

He also had a rare musical talent. Self taught, he often entertained family and friends by playing a a variety of instruments, including the accordion, piano, clarinet, harmonica and tin whistle.

His Millennium project was to build a miniature replica of Kilclief Castle in his garden which he toasted with expensive brandy, remarking that it wasn’t every day that you built a castle.

At his wake it was said that he was “some man for one man.”

Requiem mass in St Malachy’s Church, Kilclief, on Sunday, January 6, was celebrated by Rev Fr Gerry McCloskey, a family friend. 

Jack is sorely missed and the sympathy of the community is extended to his immediate family and the family circle.