Jim was taken from us unexpectedly, on June 19, 2012. He was born in Los Angeles to Oscar Burl Kerr and Della (Dickey) Kerr. As a child he lived in Lake County and the Colusa area. He spent time working on local farms learning how to operate all types of equipment and graduated from Colusa High School. He was a Korean War Veteran; released from active service in 1955. At that point he began a 40 year career with Calavaras Cement 1955 - 1995. He began with the company in Calavaras and relocated to Redding with his family in 1961 when the plant was opened here. Jim was a chemist as well as able to do most every other job at the plant. Jim started Jim & I Aviators in 1995 with his wife Sue and niece Susan McCormick. He gave wings to many and loved breaking his "earthly bonds". For the past three years he was semi-retired from flying and was working on projects around the house.
Jim was not happy unless he was planning and working on some building project. He could weld, build, work on vehicles and could operate almost any type of equipment. His most recent interest was British cars; he was the proud owner of a Sunbeam Alpine and Triumph Spitfire. In the past, Jim has participated as a volunteer fireman, belonged to the Jeep Club and was part of Search and Rescue and a member of the Civil Air Patrol; the Enterprise Flying Club and the West Coast Cessna 120/140 club. Currently he was a member of the Redding British Car Club, Aircraft Owner's and Pilot's Assn and the Experimental Aircraft Assn. In the past going to fly-ins during the summer offered much enjoyment. Most recently Jim loved to go on rides with the British car club, take trips with the trailer, camp, canoe and do anything in the outdoors; his garden was his pride and joy.
Jim is survived by his wife of 19 years Sue (Susan), daughters Jennifer Gasta, Rebecca Fetters, Della Sunderland and son Stephen Kerr (Sheryl). Niece Susan McCormick, nephew John Ludtke (Willy), stepchildren Cody Sandifer, Dana Reis and Justin Sandifer. He also leaves behind many grandchildren and great-grandchildren. An honors ceremony will take place at the Veterans Cemetery in Igo on Thursday July 5th at 9:30am.
A celebration of life will be held on Friday, July 6th at 11:30am at the Jim & I Aviators hangar on the Redding Municipal Airport, 6030 Old Oregon Trail. Please bring your memories to share.
Arrangements handled through Allen & Dahl Funeral Chapel in Redding (243-1525).