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Vera A. Kerr
December 24, 1922 ~ November 3, 2018 (age 95)
Vera Arlene Kerr, age 95, of North Kansas City, MO was born Dec. 24, 1922, in Clarksburg, MO and passed away peacefully Nov. 3, 2018. Born on Christmas Eve to Charles and Beatrice Baker, Vera was a trailblazer and independent woman throughout her life. After putting herself through Central Missouri State Teachers College in Warrensburg, MO, she left her small hometown for the big city. She started teaching in the North Kansas City School District in 1945 and became the first married female teacher in the district. She was even allowed to continue teaching when she was expecting her first daughter, which was unprecedented at the time. She spent several years raising her two daughters before returning to teaching full time. She spent years as a dedicated fifth-grade teacher at Eastwood Elementary before retiring from Briarcliff Elementary in 1982. She touched many lives as a teacher and heard from multiple former students over the years about the valuable impact she had on their lives. She married Kenneth Kerr in 1949, and they shared a life of love, faith and family until his passing in 1995. They set the standard for what a loving marriage and partnership should be for their daughters and all who had the good fortune to know them. We are all better because of them. Vera dedicated her life and time to her church and her family, as well as being a faithful volunteer at the Nearly New Shop for decades. Shewas a member of the First Baptist Church in North Kansas City for more than 70 years, serving in multiple leadership roles and living a life of dedicated Christian ministry. She was passionate about travel, visiting all 50 states and many foreign countries. She passed her spirit for adventure and travel to her children and grandchildren, who all seize the opportunity for new destinations. Her days lit up when she spent time with family – weekly visits or Skype sessions with her great grandsons, holiday traditions like her scavenger hunt for the Santa pouches, taking mystery trips with sisters and cousins and keeping up with her children and grandchildren’s busy lives. She embraced technology as a way to stay engaged. She enjoyed spending time with Jerry Allee, her special friend and companion for the past several years – cheering on favorite sports teams, working jigsaw puzzles, and looking forward to Saturday date night and Frostys from Wendy’s. Vera was predeceased by her husband, Kenneth, and her parents. She is survived by her two daughters Janis Reed (Terry), Blue Springs, and Karen Garrison (Mike), Kansas City; five grandchildren Maj. Duncan Reed (Britney), Rosamond, CA, Elliott and Baxter Reed, Blue Springs, Kelsey Brazelton (David) and Colin Garrison, Kansas City; three great grandchildren – Briggs Charles Kerr Reed, Carlin Walker Brazelton, Amayla Everly Brazelton; sisters Emogene Schoeneberg and Nadine Harris and many cousins, nieces and nephews. Services will be held on Thursday, Nov. 8, 2018 at the 1st Baptist Church of NKC, with visitation beginning at 9:30, funeral at 11am, burial immediately following at Terrace Park Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, Vera requested donations to First Baptist Church, North Kansas City. She remained fiercely independent throughout her life, continuing to live on her own and drive her car up until the last week of her life. She left us on her terms, with her selflessness and concern for those around her evident to her last day. She instilled traditions and values in us that will continue for generations. We were blessed to have had her in our lives and will continue to try to make her proud.
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