July 30, 2005

Horrible, Senseless, Awful

My boss — the head of our project — a man who had done so much for both Maggie and me, was killed today in an accident with a car while out for one of his usual runs. It’s just awful. My heart goes out to his wife and their children.

I don’t know many details, and I expect so many people are in shock, as I am. Jim was such a strong person in so many ways, and a strong personality. He had a positive effect on many lives and was full of humor, compassion, intelligence, and a love of life.

We had recently celebrated his retirement from teaching. The parties in his honor were filled with the people who loved and admired him. Please keep them in your thoughts.

Posted by James at July 30, 2005 9:04 PM
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Oh James, I'm so sorry. Peace to you and all those who are suffering from this loss.

Posted by: Karen at July 30, 2005 9:42 PM

Just got the e-mail from Maggie. I never really knew the man but I am sorry for your loss. Hope things look up soon.

Posted by: Chuck S. at July 31, 2005 2:27 AM

Just saw the S-T. How heroes can vary. Condolences to you, Maggie, the Kaputs and the whole UMass family.

Posted by: ThirdMate at July 31, 2005 9:18 AM

Oh, that's awful. My condolances to everyone who knew him.

Posted by: Mike at July 31, 2005 10:04 AM

Oh, James, my heart just sunk when I read this. Your title captures it all. I'm so sorry.

Posted by: Bil at July 31, 2005 11:02 AM

I work with James, and everything he said is certainly true. We loved the man, and will miss him dearly. Tomorrow will be a somber day around the office without the ramdom push-up contests. All will miss the "Beer Fairy".


Posted by: Jake at July 31, 2005 6:26 PM

Hey James,

Ryan just told me a little while ago. I am so so sorry to hear. My heart goes out to all of you at the office.
Take care.

Posted by: Mary-Kate at July 31, 2005 8:05 PM

Oh my god, I wondered if you knew him. I heard the story on WBUR and then read more details in Saturday's Globe.

I'm sorry to hear that you have lost a collegue and friend. What a horrible way to die.

Posted by: Patti M. at August 1, 2005 9:46 AM

I feel that words won't do justice, his impact is far-reaching, but I can't stay quiet.

Many in the office joked that he could outlive us all - that he was in better shape than any of us. His generosity, candor and patience were great; he will be missed and remebered.

Cheers, to our Beer Fairy.

Posted by: Sharon at August 1, 2005 11:08 AM

Here's an article from the New Bedford Standard, with a picture of Prof. Kaput. He sounds like someone I would have enjoyed meeting. How sad.


Posted by: Patti M. at August 1, 2005 11:30 AM

I think you would have.

Sitting in his office this morning, it's easier to think that he's off on one of his trips. I've been sitting here, contacting people and hitting the refrigerator reserves.

Posted by: James at August 1, 2005 1:16 PM

James and Maggie,

We are so sorry to hear of your loss. You are in our thoughts.

Bill, Sarah, Liam and Fay.

Posted by: bill at August 2, 2005 1:17 AM

Today, the Boston Globe ran his obit, which was a very interesting read. He was a WPI grad. SimCalc Technologies was mentioned as well.


Sounds like a super guy. What a tragic extinguishment of a fabulous mind.

Posted by: Patti M. at August 2, 2005 1:41 PM

:( My condolences to everyone who knew him.

Posted by: Ailsa at August 2, 2005 1:58 PM

Like I said to James on the phone, Kaput is dead while Bush, Rove, et al live on. Definite proof of the senselessness of death.

Posted by: briwei at August 2, 2005 5:28 PM

I just read this as I've been absent from your site for a bit. I remember Kaput from Integrated Math Tools. I never got to know him well, but he always struck me as a decent sort.

my condolences


Posted by: Rui at August 4, 2005 2:56 PM

I'm sorry I didn't email you, Rui. I really only got partway through the mental list I had before it was all over the news here, and then the point seemed moot. But, of course, in Vancouver it was probably not in the paper. ;)

I saw Paul Bertone and Ruthie at the wake. It was too bad we were meeting under such horrible circumstances, but I got to catch up a bit with a LOT of great people I haven't seen in a while, Like JimC, Rich D, McCabe's son Rob...

People have really pulled together. Meanwhile blogging is still relatively on hold. But I will be back!

Posted by: James at August 4, 2005 6:50 PM

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