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James E. Vevera

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James E. Vevera Obituary

James E. Vevera, 87, passed away peacefully at Parrish Medical Center on Thursday, February 21, 2013. He was born in Cleveland, Ohio, on July 3, 1925, to the late James Alois and Margaret Mary Vevera. He was the oldest of seven children and with his family, moved to Orlando in 1939. He was an Air Force Veteran of World War II, and was a member of St. Teresa of Avila Catholic Church in Titusville.

He is survived by Marie, his loving wife of 58 years. They raised three children: their son, the late James A. Vevera of Titusville, who passed away in May 2011; and two daughters, Valerie Holt of New Port Richey, Florida, and Patricia (Alok) Anil of Fairfield, Connecticut. He was a caring and loving father and will be deeply missed. He is also survived by his sisters, Elaine Smyth, Margaret (Charlie) Appleman of Orlando, Rosemary (John) Rourk of Indialantic and Charlotte (Ed) Kay of Vero Beach; his sister-in-law, Carol (David) Vevera of Maitland; six grandchildren, Matthew, Lauren and Lindsay Holt, Ankit Anil, Meghann and Corey Vevera; and one great-grandchild, Lily Holt. In addition to his son and parents, Jim was preceded in death by his sister, Rita Vevera Colvin; and his brother, David M. Vevera.

After receiving a Mechanical Engineering degree from Georgia Tech in 1950, he worked in the test and experimental division at the Wright Aeronautical Corp. in Woodbridge, NJ, participating in the development of large aircraft engines. In 1954, he relocated to Florida to participate in the Snark Missile Program at Cape Canaveral. Later, due to other contracts at Kennedy Space Center, he was involved in the development of the Agena, Mercury, Gemini, Atlas, Saturn, Apollo and Space Shuttle programs. Jim was Project Manager of the Shuttle Launch Equipment Test Facility at Kennedy Space Center and retired from Rockwell International Corp. in 1986.

During his retirement, Jim derived great pleasure in accomplishing various home projects, such as building an extensive wooden fence surrounding three sides of his backyard, or building a brick patio, or enhancing flower beds or laying sod. He was truly an innovative person.

A Mass of Christian Burial celebrating Jim's life will be conducted at 10:00 am on Tuesday, February 26, 2013, at St. Teresa of Avila Catholic Church in Titusville. Burial will follow at Oaklawn Memorial Gardens.

Many thanks to the staff of Hospice of St. Francis who, with great comfort and compassion, took care of Jim during the final days of his life.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the in honor of Jim.

Online condolences may be shared at

Published in FLORIDA TODAY on Feb. 24, 2013
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