Gerald “Kenny” Bryan passed away peacefully on April 8, 2014 after a short illness. He was 76.
Born in Athens, Tennessee, Kenny lived most of his life in Northeast Ohio. To help his family, he started working at the age of 12 shining shoes. It would be a work ethic that carried through to his last day.
After graduating from Akron South High School, Kenny began working at Babcock & Wilcox in Barberton. His first job was washing test tubes. For the next 42 years, Kenny was promoted to positions of increasing responsibility and ended his career in quality control in the nuclear division. He loved his job and was fiercely loyal to B&W. He represented the company all over the world with frequent trips to Japan, Sweden, China and Nigeria. He loved the travel and shared his stories with his children after each trip
Upon his retirement at the age of 60, Kenny took on a new career challenge as a consultant with Weld Wire Company of King of Prussia, Pennsylvania. It was a labor of love, providing him with an opportunity to stay active in his profession. Because of the extraordinary kindness of the leadership and employees of Weld Wire, Kenny was able to work until his very last day, something he often spoke of wanting to do.
He was a complex, deeply private man of very few words. He loved dogs, old and fast cars, and puttering around his home in Green where, during warm weather months, he mowed the lawn nearly every day, whether it needed it or not. He loved the wooded area and stream behind his home and always found some reason to be out there.
Kenny took great pride in providing for his family. Growing up poor made him a believer in the value of an honest day’s work and the necessity of making your own way in this world. He was deeply committed to his work and took his identity from his accomplishments in his work setting.
Kenny is survived by his wife of 55 years, Carol; son, Tim (Jackie); daughter, Barrie; and grandchildren Alex, Natalie and Wyatt.
A memorial service will be held Friday, April 11 at 7 p.m. at the Newcomer Funeral Home, 131 N. Canton Road, Akron, Ohio. Friends and family may call from 5 to 7 p.m.
The family wishes to express its profound appreciation to the staff of Crossroads Hospice for their kindness and extraordinary care of Kenny during the past four weeks. In lieu of flowers, the family encourages donations in Kenny’s name to Crossroads Hospice, 3743 Boettler Oaks Drive, Green, Ohio 44685.