David Boyd Kennedy

September 2, 1933March 10, 2019


He was a humble man - a man of honor, humor and hugs!

David Boyd Kennedy, age 85, passed away peacefully on Sunday, March 10, 2019 at his home with wife Sally, daughter Jane and son Doug at his side. He was born on September 2, 1933 in Ann Arbor to James Alexander and Elizabeth (Earhart) Kennedy. David attended Angell School and Tappan Junior High and graduated from Ann Arbor High School in 1951. He continued his education at McGill University and the University of Michigan and received his AB from Indiana University in 1958, with a major in Economics and minor in Russian. In between his junior and senior years of college, David was in the US Army, at which time he studied Russian at the Defense Language Institute, Monterey, CA and then was stationed at Fort Devens in Massachusetts. Further education included receiving a LLB at the University of Michigan in 1963. Because of his love of language, he studied German at the Goethe Institut in Germany and one year, attended Yale University to study Chinese. During two law school summers, he led groups for The Experiment in International Living, one to Germany, the other to the USSR.

David had two separate careers, first in Sheridan, WY as a practicing attorney and second as President of the Earhart Foundation in Ann Arbor, MI. During his twenty one years in Wyoming and being civic-minded, he also served six years as a member of the House of Representatives, Attorney General for the State, a member of the Republican National Committee, both as Chairman and later as National Committeeman. In 1984 he returned to Ann Arbor to manage his late grandfather Harry Boyd Earhart’s foundation until retirement in 2003.

This accomplished man served on a number of Board of Directors, including the University Musical Society (University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI), the President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities as an appointed member (Washington, D.C.), World Learning, Inc. Trustee (Brattleboro, VT), Philanthropy Roundtable (Washington, D.C.) and Council Public Policy Trustee (Bayreuth, Germany). His career related boards included Earhart Foundation Trustee (Ann Arbor, MI) for forty years, Citizen Research Council of Michigan (Livonia, MI), Board of Overseers at the Hoover Institute (Stanford University, Palo Alto, CA) and Institute of Justice (Washington, D.C.). His memberships include the Mont Pelerin Society, Wyoming State Bar and the State Bar of Michigan.

As his grandchildren have expressed their Grandpa/Boppie was cuddly, loving and hopeful. Often he took his six year old granddaughter Josie and son Doug to luncheon at favorite Ann Arbor restaurants. During his Chapel Hill visits he spent quality time with his older grandchildren Amelia and Emerson. David also had such respect for humanity. All types of music inspired him, especially, during University Musical Society concerts. The UM Musical Theatre students’ talents uplifted him, and all year he looked forward to the Maize and Blue on Broadway Tour. For twenty six years (twenty four as Chairman) the Institute of Justice brought him such a sense of accomplishment. Travel throughout the world with his Sally, his family and treasured friends was high on his list. Last but definitely not least, he enjoyed his friendships at VPs and at the Ann Arbor Club. He now is making Grand Slams with his Ann Arbor Club bridge buddies in Heaven!

David Kennedy was preceded in death by his parents and his sisters, Joan Kennedy Slocum and Susan Kennedy. He is survived by his wife Sally (Pyne); daughter Jane Mack (Brian) of Chapel Hill, NC; son, Douglas Kennedy (Stephanie) of Ann Arbor, MI; sister Ann Irish (David) of Harbor Springs, MI; brother, James Kennedy (Patricia), Ann Arbor, MI; three grandchildren, Amelia and Emerson Mack and Josephine Kennedy and numerous cousins, nephews and nieces.

Memorial Services will be held at St Andrews Episcopal Church, 306 N. Division, Ann Arbor, on Thursday, June 13, 2019 at 10:00 a.m.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the University Musical Society (881 N. University Avenue, Ann Arbor, MI 48109), UM Musical Theatre Program (2005 Baits Drive, Ann Arbor, MI 48109), Institute for Justice (901 N. Glebe Road, Arlington, VA 22203).


13 June

Memorial Service

10:00 am

St. Andrews Episcopal Church

306 N. Division
Ann Arbor, MI


David Boyd Kennedy

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