Hamm, Otto Lee

Hamm, Otto Lee

The very special spirit of Otto Lee Hamm left our physical realm on June 30, 2015, in Mesa, Arizona.  He was born on November 26, 1933, in Montgomery County, Indiana.  He is survived by his wife, Jan Hamm, and two sons, Thomas and Timothy Hamm as well as Tom’s children, Tom and Kayliegh.  His first wife, Mary Pat; his parents, Homer Hamm and Betty (Ball) Hamm; as well as his grandparents, John and Edith Ball who raised him; all preceded him in death.

Many of his friends remember him from software projects he managed throughout the years.  He was loved by many who worked for him because he always focused on delivering a superior product to his customers.  He was also skilled at recognizing and rewarding talent and hard work, an attribute that assured him of a proficient and loyal team.

Otto’s early years held many disadvantages.  When he completed high school at White’s Institute in Wabash County, Indiana, he went to work for a printing company.  Because young men were being drafted for the Korean conflict, his veteran co-workers encouraged him to enlist, rather than be drafted into the army.  His enlistment in the US Air Force proved to be a decision that would change his life.  There he was trained in accounting, then encouraged to move to computer science where he was exposed to the early development of computer technology.  The US Air Force and IBM provided him with training on each new technological innovation implemented by the Air Force.

Once he returned to civilian life, Otto realized the value of his knowledge and acumen in this field.  He and Jan eventually started their own business and led many software development and installation projects over a period of 30 years.

Otto was a loving husband, business partner, and best friend.  He was a serious home chef, he loved golf, and he was generous to his family and friends in a caring way, quietly helping when help was needed.

A memorial service will be held in Minnesota at a later date.  This website will be updated to identify time and place, and key friends and family will be notified personally.

Donations may be made to the Phoenix American Lung Association at www.lungusa.org/ or to the Wounded Warrior Project at www.woundedwarriorproject.org/contact-us/phoenix.aspx.

 

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12 responses to Hamm, Otto Lee

  1. Having had the great fortune to work with both Otto and Jan on several Ohio MMIS engagements some “moons” ago it is difficult to know that his great spirit has moved on – our condolences to his family and to his extraordinary partner Jan. It is comforting to know that his life was a full one and that he is widely known for his amazing competence, energy, and the stamp of his very engaging personality.

    Otto’s skills, quick and sharp mind, project leadership and force of personality were a unique combination that many here in Ohio will long remember. To know that Otto was “at the helm” on tough and complex projects was to feel confident that things would get done, done well, and done with more “esprit de corps” than anyone had the right to expect. Beyond these incredible skillsets he leaves a wonderful legacy of quick wit, a million laughs and abundant happy memories. He brought fun and energy to the table and will be forever remembered for all these things.

    1. Jan Hamm says:

      Thanks, Kathy and Bill, for that well worded and heart felt remembrance. It makes me proud that you thought as much of Otto as I know he thought of you. Although it has been many years since we spoke face to face, our memories of Ohio and our special friends there have stayed in our hearts and in our personal conversations.

      I think that Ohio was Otto’s favorite project. He loved the brilliance of the policy people whose ideas he supported with systems technology. He spoke often of meetings with you as well as Paul, Pat, Peggy, and Diane . What a dynamic team!

      Thanks for giving me this special remembrance.

      Jan

    2. So sorry for your loss. I am (his son) Timothy’s widow. Tim passed soon after Otto did on July 18th.

      The stories remembering Otto remind me of my Tim.
      Seems they were A LOT alike😘

      May his Memory be Eternal.
      Rest in Peace 🙏🏻🌹💔.

  2. I have had the privilege of being Otto’s sister-in-law for almost forty years. During that time, Otto has been a wise and kind big brother who has injected humor and practicality, and fun, into our encounters. I think of him as playful, mischievous and intriguing, with his amazing, quick mind and the twinkle in his eye. He was a fascinating human being who had a tender heart and a deep generosity. When he looked into my eyes, I felt that he was really seeing me. In Jan, Otto found the person who could and would become his soulmate. Together, they achieved something few human beings ever do: true intimacy and true partnership. I wish that I had had much more time with Otto. I miss him greatly and will never forget him. To wonderful Jan and all others who loved Otto, I extend my deepest condolences that Otto is no longer with us in his corporeal form.

  3. Dear Jan,

    Having lost my husband just a year ago, I empathize with you on a level that can be known by only those of us who have walked this journey. My sincere sympathy to you and your family.

  4. David and I send our condolences out to my cousin Jan at this time of celebrating the wonderful lifer Otto shared with so many. God bless you Jan at this time of great loss.

  5. I unfortunately did not know Otto well, but on a visit to their AZ. home I found him to be soft spoken, and so kind and thoughtful…and a great cook too! ~that Jan loved him so much was enough for me to think of him as “family”!
    Hugs-
    Martha

  6. Bev Downey says:

    So sorry for your lose Jan-hoping the good Lord will hold your and on this new journey of life.

  7. Skip Stein says:

    I am so very sad to hear of Otto’s passing. The earth is a lesser place now he has departed.

    I worked with Otto and Jan way back in 2001 on the State of Nebraska HIPAA IT project. Otto was the Project Manager and was a genius at what he did. Unlike many/most PM’s Otto always managed to have a smile and encouragement to all around him. Never a discouraging word. He inspired us all to excel at what we were tasked to do.

    Jan was a Project Lead and although married they were professional to a fault but it was always obvious how much they cared for each other.

    Otto was one of the best, no THE best, Project Manager I have ever, in my 45 years of IT work, been privileged to work for. Even after all these years, Otto and Jan have always remained in my memory and heart.

    I know Otto will be sorely missed by all who know and love him. I imagine him getting things in order in that great Data Center above!

    God Bless!

    Skip Stein
    Orlando Florida

  8. It was great to work with Otto. It openned my eyes working on APD’s, RFP’s for Medicaid systems. As a result, I was able to put new APD’s or RFP’s together. Great lessons learned. Thanks OTTO.

  9. Through Jan’s loving and delightful stories, I feel like I knew Otto. Please except my sympathy to Jan, family and friends that are now missing this significant person in their lives. May memories of him bring smiles and some comfort.

  10. Robert Beale says:

    “He was loved by many who worked for him because he always focused on delivering a superior product to his customers. He was also skilled at recognizing and rewarding talent and hard work, an attribute that assured him of a proficient and loyal team.”

    I was a beneficiary of Otto’s keen eye and proud to call myself one of his proteges. To me he was the Captain as in “Captain Kangaroo”. He paid close attention to the young and up and coming and took those who he felt held the most promise under his wing. “O” will be sorelt missed but his legacy will live on through those he mentored.

    My deepest sympathy to Jann and the rest of the Hamm Family.

    Bobby Beale

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