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.
12 Comments To "Hamm, Otto Lee"
#1 Comment By Bev Downey On July 11, 2015 @ 12:00 am
So sorry for your lose Jan-hoping the good Lord will hold your and on this new journey of life.
#2 Comment By Skip Stein On July 12, 2015 @ 12:00 am
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!
#3 Comment By Yohannes Birre On July 13, 2015 @ 12:00 am
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.
#4 Comment By Cynthia Gruber On July 13, 2015 @ 12:00 am
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.
#5 Comment By Robert Beale On July 15, 2015 @ 12:00 am
“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.