Timothy Dennis O’Leary
March 22, 1951 – April 30, 2016
Longtime Homer resident Timothy Dennis O’Leary died unexpectedly Saturday, April 30, 2016, at South Peninsula Hospital. He was 65.
The second of seven children, Tim was born in Schenectady, N. Y., on March 22, 1951, to Rosario “Tita” and Theodore O’Leary. The family traveled extensively abroad, settled in Syracuse from 1955 to 1967, and then moved to Greensburg, Pa., where Tim graduated from Latrobe Area High School in 1969. He spent five years at Penn State University and in 1975 followed his brother Kevin to Kodiak, where he briefly worked. In Kodiak, Tim won the heart of the lovely Susan Webster from Visalia, Calif. The two soon married and moved to Homer, where he lived for 35 years.
“A young Bill Nye the science guy” is how Tim’s siblings characterize him as a child, for his love of the natural world and his fondness for explaining the things he saw with his microscopes, telescope and chemistry set. He often led them on late-night treks to view the stars. When he got his first car, he promptly set out for Jackson Hole, Wyo., to witness more of the splendor he endlessly found in nature.
In 1980 Tim purchased the only cab company in Homer, which he operated in conjunction with his other business,
Kachemak Courier Service. He went on to develop a relationship with Homer Electric Association, providing the community with a non business-hours answering service for all HEA matters, particularly power outages. The most significant aspect of Tim’s work was diagnosing and directing crews to problem areas and, for safety, monitoring the linemen’s progress until they returned to the shop. Without any employees, Tim provided this service to HEA for nearly 25 years. On his watch, no lineman was ever lost.
Tim was well known for his many letters and articles published in the Homer News, where he shared his common sense and uncommon heart with all. Despite his many political worries and concerns, Tim was an eternal optimist, especially after the births of his two granddaughters, who became central to his life.
His parents and his brother, Chipper, preceded Tim in death. He is survived by his beloved daughter Mercedes Harness, granddaughters Morgan and Evelyn, son-in-law Ben Harness, and siblings Kevin O’Leary, Mercedes Meidel, Gloria Robinson, Tina O’Leary and Brian O’Leary.
A memorial potluck is planned for Friday, June 3, at 6 p.m. at the Homer Elks Lodge, where everyone is invited to share memories. For further information, contact Mercedes at 299-1697.