Joseph Cecil Kennedy, Jr.

February 26, 1937April 10, 2021

Joseph Cecil Kennedy, Jr., 84, passed away peacefully with his wife and family by his side in Bel Air, Maryland, on April 10, 2021. Joe was born in Atlanta, Georgia and was the only child of Vera Louise Farmer Kennedy and Joseph Cecil Kennedy in 1937. He graduated The Citadel, the Military College of South Carolina, where he earned a BS in Commerce and was commissioned in the US Army in 1958. Joe was a Major in the US Army serving in Korea, Germany and 2 tours in Vietnam as a pilot, flying both CV-2B Caribou Cargo aircraft and OV-1 Mohawk aircraft. He was a lifetime member of the OV-1 Mohawk Association, #101. He received The Broken Wing Award given to aviators who saved lives or aircraft during a mid-air emergency. He also received The Distinguished Flying Cross award which is given to members of the US Armed Forces for distinguished acts of heroism in aerial flight. After returning stateside, he was stationed at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, where he worked for the US Army Land Warfare Laboratory and Army Materiel Systems Analysis Activity. Then he began his federal service as a logistician all the while serving in the Maryland Army National Guard as a CW4 helicopter pilot and flew the Cobra AH-1. After “retiring" from the National Guard, he continued serving at APG with the Army Test and Evaluation Command and finally retired with 46 years of military and federal service to our country.

Joe leaves behind his loving wife, Joyce Havenga Kennedy, his daughter, Shawn Kennedy Gordon and her husband Randy; daughter Trea Robinson O’Malley and her husband Michael along with their 2 children Alexandra and Eliza; and Kristen Robinson Murphy and her husband Mark along with their 2 children Jack and Logan. Joe will be remembered by family and friends as a proud patriot and enjoyed scuba diving, bow hunting, duck hunting, fishing, skiing, tennis, golf, international travel and was an avid dog lover. Some of Joe’s favorite things included entertaining, gourmet cooking and a generous glass of Jack Daniels.

He will be laid to rest at Arlington National Cemetery with full military honors.

Due to Covid, Joe’s celebration of his life will be held at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a memorial to The Humane Society of Harford County at or St. Jude Children’s Hospital at

Online condolences may be left for the family at


No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.


Joseph Cecil Kennedy, Jr.

have a memory or condolence to add?

Linda Crumpton

May 5, 2021

So sorry to hear that you lost your Dad to this world. I pray for you and your family at this time . I am sure you have many wonderful memories to hang on to. Sincerely Linda Crumpton

Tom Gallucci

April 22, 2021

From the OV-1 Mohawk Association

We are terribly sorry to hear about the passing of Joe. In this sorrowful time, we would like to extend to you our heartfelt condolences to his family and friends. We know that many of our members have fond memories of Joe. He will be missed and will not be forgotten in the OV-1 Mohawk Community.

Neal Schlaffer

April 14, 2021

I am so sorry to hear of Joe's passing. I remember all the walks we took at lunchtime while working for AMSAA and AEC. I enjoyed listening to Joe's stories about his service in VietNam, Korea, and his time in the MD NG. I especially remember the photo of his heavily damaged Mohawk aircraft which he flew back to safety after a mission in VietNam. God bless you Joe.

Linda and Frank Mitchell

April 13, 2021

Dearest Joyce, Trea, Christin, and Shawn,
Our hearts go out to you all in your loss of Joe. Many good times were had with you all at your house, ours, and at Webster Lake! You will be in our thoughts and prayers. Please let us know if we can of any help to any of you. Please let us know when the burial will be at Arlington. We would like to be there.
All our love ,
Linda and Frank "Mitch" Mitchell ♥️

Daniel Chapman

April 13, 2021

Joe was a great mentor, instructor, and sage. He was always willing to help and maintained a positive attitude. I thoroughly enjoyed flying missions with him. I will remember him fondly. May he rest in peace.

William Reeder

April 12, 2021

Joe was a dear friend, a brother in combat, my leader war and inspiration in life. I will miss him. My love to Joyce and all the family.