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Longtime Fort Wayne attorney dies

March 17, 2009

A Fort Wayne attorney who practiced law for more than 60 years died Monday.

Jerome J. "Jerry" O'Dowd, 90, was admitted to the bar in June 1942. He practiced in Fort Wayne from 1946 until his retirement in August 2004. O'Dowd belonged to the Indiana State and Allen County bar associations and served on various local government boards including the Allen County Election Board, Allen County Park Board, and Board of Directors of Park Center Inc. O'Dowd served as corporate attorney for the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend for 30 years. He was appointed in 1959 to a four-year term as city attorney of Fort Wayne.

O'Dowd graduated from Notre Dame Law School and served in the Navy during World War II. He was awarded the Silver Star Medal for action at Guam, the Navy Cross at Iwo Jima, and three Presidential Citations. He retired from the Naval Reserve in 1949.

O'Dowd is survived by his wife, Ruth Holthouse O'Dowd; sons Thomas, David, and Kevin O'Dowd; daughters Amy O'Dowd Ryan and Sally O'Dowd; and several grandchildren and nieces.

Calling is from 3 to 7 p.m. Wednesday at D.O. McComb & Sons Lakeside Park Funeral Home, 1140 Lake Ave., Fort Wayne. Mass of Christian burial is 10:30 a.m. Thursday at St. Jude Catholic Church, 2310 Pemberton Dr., Fort Wayne, with calling one hour prior to the service.

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