The Greater Cleveland Chapter of the Ohio Genealogical Society lost its treasurer Saturday when 60-year-old George Purdy died of complications from cancer.
the Purdy was widely known in Bay Village, where he lived for 30 years, especially for the parrot he carried on his shoulder as he walked his dogs. He was most recently senior systems administrator for the Cuyahoga County Veterans Service Commission. He operated a consulting business, Innovative Systems, for many years.
In 1985, a parrot was spotted foraging in Purdy's suburb. He set out to rescue it. He roamed the neighborhood with binoculars tracking the bird's flight patterns. Along the way, Purdy picked up a band of youthful helpers who tramped with him through yards and fields and reported the bird's movements.
When Purdy found the parrot's favorite tree, he set a trap and captured it after three weeks of effort. No one claimed the parrot and it became a Purdy family pet. They named it Rambo and it remains the family's pet.
Purdy was born in Hinsdale, Ill. He moved to Ohio and later was co-captain of the football team at Rocky River High School. He was recruited by Ohio State University and the University of Michigan, but chose to play football for two years at the United States Naval Academy instead. He returned to the Buckeye State and graduated from OSU with a degree in computer and information science in 1968.
Purdy was a popular football coach and basketball scheduler in youth recreation programs. He claimed descent from Daniel Boone and enjoyed camping and hiking with his family on the Appalachian Trail. He was a deacon at Bay Presbyterian Church, treasurer of the Ohio Genealogical Society and on the board of the Data Processing Management Association.
He married Ruth Hosler 38 years ago.
Purdy is survived by his wife; daughters Janet of Lakewood and Kristin of Bay Village; a son, Geoff of Olmsted Falls; his father, George A. Sr. of Rocky River; two grandchildren; and a brother.
Memorial donations may be made to:
U.S. Naval Academy Foundation, P.O. Box 64740, Baltimore, Md. 21264.
The Bay Presbyterian Church music program.