In Memory

Daniel Kerwick

Kerwick, Danny

Rochester: May 31, 2017 at age 61. Danny was a writer and poet who spent most of his life in New Orleans, a place he loved. A graduate of Irondequoit High School, Danny loved music (jazz & blues) and sports (the Saints & the Cubs). His poetry books include "Behind Lies the Sugar" and "The Orchestra Has Left the Building". He was the founding editor of Simpatico Poets Press. His poetry was included in the script of the recent Broadway production of "Airline Highway". Earlier in his writing career, Danny spent time with The Raindog Theatre in Portland Oregon.

Predeceased by his mother, Patricia. Survived by his father, Tom of Rochester & Skaneateles NY; his siblings, Ann of Rochester NY, Tim of Charleston SC, Ellen (Sue Knapp) of Syracuse NY, Nora of Seattle WA, and Matt (Mary) of Skaneateles NY; his niece, Micky (Luka) of Charleston SC; his nephews, Tommy & Sean of Skaneatles NY, and his dear friend, Pat Kaschalk of New Orleans LA.

A celebration of Danny's life will be scheduled at a future date.
 
 
 

Published in Rochester Democrat And Chronicle on June 3, 2017



 
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06/06/17 04:44 PM #1    

Meg Evans

one of my early school memories is the first day of kindergarten. I spent the morning building and running in a big block obstacle course we made with Danny Kerwick. He made the world a brighter place. Rest In Peace Danny. 


06/07/17 09:21 AM #2    

Robert Connors

Sorry to hear of Dan Kerwick's passing. I believe Dan was in my 4th grade class at St. Thomas under Sister Bellarmine (but if not, he was a parish member), and also attended Iroquois Middle School and Irondequoit High School.  Although we were not close, I can remember his red hair, freckles, and smiling face...and good sense of Irish humor.  RIP, Dan.  Bob Connors


06/07/17 11:05 AM #3    

James Holland

Dan was a very dear friend for many years. A small guy with a big heart . So many great memories with him . Too many to post . I remember we skipped church service at st Thomas and a nun called my house. We spent many nights after school for that . He loved hockey . Even in 7th grade him and several other friends use to pay an older person to buy beer and we would sit on the corner drinking it all night . Not to mention driving golf balls into homes at Iroquois school some nights . But the fall leafs piled on the streets and the smell of burning them was sweet . A dear buddy gone to heaven for sure . Rest In Peace my friend Jim 


06/12/17 01:02 AM #4    

Earl Cassorla

I'll share a story.  Like the rest of you, I received the automated email like I get whenever another of our classmates sadly passes away.  The name this time was Daniel Kerwick.  I didn't recognize the name, so I didn't think much about it.  Soon afterwards I received an email from classmate Pete McGrain stating simply "RIP Danny" with two youtube links related to Daniel Kerwick.  I watched the videos, and responded to Pete with my condolences for his friend.  I did not recognize Daniel in the videos as anyone I remembered.

Then, being curious, I looked at the class website to read the comments, and I saw a somewhat recent photo of a smiling Daniel Kerwick wearing a full gray beard.

Okay, now his smile looked familiar.



It took me a little while, but even after all these years I still recognized that most genuine smile that seemed to emanate all the way from down to his toes.  To this day, I never knew his name.

Here is my memory of Danny.  We were I'd say 16.  Irondequoit high school at the time had set aside a room they called the "Math Resource Center".  Me, being such a total nerd that I was, I used to just hang out there hoping to rub elbows with other misfit nerds LOL.  One day I was sitting at a table in that room when a math teacher came in with Danny and sat him at the seat across the table from me and put some papers in front of him, and left him there.  I didn't know Danny, as our paths had never crossed before.  The papers in front of him were a multiple choice math test. 

Danny was a shy kid, as was I at the time.  I could see Danny was struggling severely with the challenge imposed on him and I began to look at the papers and read the questions upside down.  He shyly glanced up at me seeing that I was looking at the paper and in his eyes I sensed one of the kindest kids I had ever met.  I'm serious.  And he was having a tough time.

You know, I was blessed with an ability in mathematics.  Danny clearly was not fortunate enough to be gifted with that particular gift.  I knew this because the multiple choice math questions on the test were at quite an elementary level.   I never felt this made me better than anyone else.  Heck, I stunk at sports.  You know . . .  one of the last pitiful guys picked when picking the teams for dodge ball.  I signaled Danny with the answer to the multiple choice question he was struggling with.  And then the next one, and so on.  We never conversed in the normal sense.  When time was up the teacher came back to take Danny with him and picked up the test.  Danny and I never spoke, either before or after that encounter.  And as I said, I never even knew his name until just now.  But from that point forward, every time our eyes would meet, when in the halls or at a school event, we'd acknowledge each other with an authentic smile, and a quick wave of the hand and a nod.  That's why I know that great smile.  That's what I still remember.  That's the smile in the picture.

I don't remember ever doing anything like that (about the test) any other time, but I've never felt like I had done anything wrong.  The kid was doing the best that he could.  Now that I have learned that he's gone it's pulling on my heart strings, and G-d, I regret that we never spoke.  

But somehow, in a weird "twilight zone" sort of way, we were friends.  RIP Danny.

Earl Cassorla


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