In memory of
Leo Elton Farr Jr.
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In memory of
Leo Elton Farr Jr.
Leo Elton Farr, Jr., of Binghamton, New York, died December 18, 2016, at the age of 96 (12/21/1919) at the Samaritan Summit Nursing Home in Watertown, NY. Son of the late Ethel Goodrich Farr and Leo Elton Farr, Sr., brother to his deceased siblings, Harriet Vogt and Harold Farr, and husband of the late Dorothea Murray Farr, Leo is survived by: his three children, Rev. Cheryl Farr Keipper, Marshall Farr, and Rev. Ronald Farr; six grandchildren, Cory Nelson and Benjamin Keipper, Julia Farr and Marigo Farr, Rachel Farr and Tara Farr; one great-grandchild, Jasmine Nelson. Leo graduated from MIT in 1941 with a physics degree. During his senior year, his roommate accidentally shot him while showing him a new hand gun from his collection. Rushed to Massachusetts General Hospital where he remained on the critical list for three weeks, Leo met his future wife, Dottie, who was his intensive care nurse. In 1943, Leo married Dottie at his father's dying wish. They were happily married for 69 years. Leo served as a Captain of the 554th Signal Aircraft Warning Battalion of the US Army in WWII. He oversaw the radar stations in Central America that guarded the Panama Canal. After the war, Leo worked for the Harvard Medical School developing gas masks to guard against chemical warfare. When working with IBM in Binghamton, NY, Leo was one of four elite engineers who designed the first heart and lung machine for human use. It was later patented and used widely in hospitals in the early 1950's. Leo worked much of his career as an electrical engineer, designing mainframe computers for IBM. He loved his work, always came home happy at the end of a day, and after 24 years with the company, he retired. He and Dottie moved to Hendersonville, NC, where they lived for over 30 years. Leo will be remembered as a gentle and mellow soul who was meticulous in his work, generous with his time and money, steady in love and kindness. He was a dedicated husband and a devoted father, known for his gratitude and balanced spirit. He was born into a musical family and excelled at the trumpet. Even as a youth he played in local big bands as well as churches. Later in life, he played in the IBM concert band and the Binghamton Symphony. Leo led a rich, full life, enjoying many hobbies such as golf, amateur photography, duplicate bridge, ballroom dancing, skiing and ice-skating, TV and radio repairs for friends and neighbors. Leo loved the great outdoors. He and Dottie travelled in their RV across the United States three times, as well as into Mexico and Canada. For eleven years, they camped in the White Mountains of New Hampshire where they served as national park hosts in the summer. A man of deep faith, Leo was a pillar of First Congregational Church, UCC, in Binghamton, where he served as a Trustee and youth advisor. He also was active in the PTA, Jaycees, and the Chamber of Commerce. He was a quiet role model for many. He was loved deeply by all in his family – more than he could possibly know. A memorial service will be held in the spring at a family cemetery in the Berkshire Mountains of Hancock, Massachusetts.
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