Joseph Scherr
Joseph Scherr, 87 years of age, of Somers, CT, who for 32 years taught mathematics in the Enfield Connecticut school system, died of pancreatic cancer on Saturday, July 3, 2010, at Evergreen Health Care Center in Stafford Springs, CT. He was born in Brooklyn, N.Y., on Oct. 19, 1922, the son of Emil and Minnie (Karp) Scherr, who had both immigrated to the United States from Russia. A graduate of Irvington (N.J.) High School, he enlisted in the Air Corps, where he served from 1942-45. He went on to receive a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Connecticut and did graduate work at Springfield College, completing an M. Ed. degree and later receiving a Certificate of Advanced Graduate Study. On Jan. 1, 1944, he married Helen Shapiro in Lincoln, Neb. Following his return from the service, they lived briefly in Willimantic, CT, and then settled in Enfield, where they spent more than 30 years, before moving to Somers. After working on his own farm for some eight years, he began to teach mathematics at Enfield High School in 1957 and later transferred to Enrico Fermi High School, retiring in 1989. He served as department chair for 14 years, and from 1968 to 1989 he was the director of adult education for the Town of Enfield. During 1973-80 he also taught as an adjunct at Springfield College; following his retirement he was the instructor for a current events class in the University of the Third Age at Asnuntuck Community College until 1998. While teaching, he was active in both the Enfield Teachers Association and the Connecticut Education Association. Known as Joe to his colleagues and as Jerry to his family and closest friends, he was a person of quick wit and irreverent outlook but with deeply held convictions. He was never happier than when discussing politics or current events, preferably with those who did not share his views. A longtime member of organizations ranging from the ACLU and Amnesty International to the Simon Wiesenthal Center and the Anti-Defamation League, he also gained fodder for his debates with others by avidly reading newspapers, magazines and books. His love of the written word was reflected in his support of the Yiddish Book Center and in his service on the Somers Library Board. In addition to their active participation in several reading groups, he and his wife also shared an enthusiasm for both the theater and film, along with travel abroad. He was predeceased by Helen, his beloved wife of 62 years, and by his brother, I. Alfred. Survivors include two sons, Barry P. Scherr of Norwich, VT, and his wife Sylvia; Richard A. Scherr of New York City and his wife Showkat; and two grandchildren, Sonia and David. He was grateful for the special friendship of Thelma Teddie Eisenberg that brightened his last years, and for the Meals on Wheels, which Barbara and Richard Polek created just for Joe.

Funeral service will be held at 12:30 p.m. on Tuesday, July 6, 2010 in the Chapel of the Weinstein Mortuary, 640 Farmington Avenue, Hartford. Interment will follow at the Knesseth Israel Synagogue Cemetery section of Ellington Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to the Friends of the Somers Public Library, P. O. Box 615, Somers, CT 06071. For further information, directions or to sign the guestbook for Joe, please visit online at

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