EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

March 13, 2014

Mr. Robert Sherwood Todd, 81 Years


Rowley — Mr. Robert S. Todd of Rowley passed over on Tuesday, March 11, surrounded by his family. He was the son of the late F. Payson Todd and Mary [Keyes] Todd and for more than 60 years the husband of Joyce “Dede” Todd. He grew up in Rowley and graduated from Newburyport High School [1950] and Tufts University [1954].

Upon graduation he entered the U.S. Navy as an ensign and became a gunnery officer on the heavy cruiser the U.S.S. Macon, the first ship outfitted with surface to air missiles. Years later he served as master of ceremonies during the first reunion of all those who had served aboard her.

Upon discharge he joined and succeeded his father as the writer of The New England Counselor, a weekly forecast of the stock market. In 1966 he and Arthur Burns, later to be head of the Federal Reserve, were the featured speakers at a seminar in Skytop, Pennsylvania. At the time the Market was considered a sure bet to break 1000 barrier but Mr. Todd predicted that it would not, but that by the end of the decade it would be down below 640, a low it hit in the fall of 1969. He later managed a hedge fund and off-shore fund from his office above the Bank of Israel in New York before returning to Rowley to resume his forecasting.

During the 1980s he set up and headed the equity division of Mass Mutual’s star agency at Center Plaza in Boston. And in the 1990s became Editor-in-Chief of the magazine Investment Profiles.

A direct descendent of the second and fourth Ministers of the town of Rowley, Mr. Todd had a long life of service to his churches. As a youth and then later in life he contributed his services to the First Congregational Church of Rowley where he was involved in the effort to restore the clock on the church steeple and used his experience to help manage the finances and assets of the church. As a younger man he was a vestryman, Warden, Sunday School Teacher, Lay Reader and Treasurer at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Newburyport, and for a time was the children’s rector during a period when the children of the Parish attended services in St. Ann’s Chapel.

As a young man he was a good athlete and was the catcher on the Rowley Rams Baseball team. He caught, his brother, Bill, pitched and brother, Starr, played center field.

Bob and Dede loved to dance and were most happy when dancing together. Together they were a gregarious and gracious couple who counted people of all ages and backgrounds their friends.

Bob had beautiful baritone voice that was featured for a time in a barbershop quartet and stood out during the singing of hymns in the church. His favorite hymn was “In the Garden.”

Bob numbered Warren Buffett among his clients at The New England Counselor and spent time investigating investment opportunities throughout New England with George W. Bush. Yet he was a down to earth man who spent great care restoring his homes in Newburyport and Rowley.

A great husband, son, brother, father, grandfather, friend and a man of faith, Bob will be missed by all whose lives he touched.

He leaves behind besides his wife, Dede; his brothers, Frank “Bill” Todd and Starr Todd, owners of the popular Todd Farm in Rowley; two sons, Robert S. Todd II, and Barry P. Todd; cherished daughter, Jennifer Gray and her husband, Mark Gray; seven grandchildren, Jessica, Maria, Christina, Alex, and Brooke Todd, Brandon and Christopher Gray.

Bob had a drive, a moral compass, a heart, a love of God, family and friends and a love of the love of his life, the girl he saw on stage when he was sixteen, pursued, wooed, and married, that were second to none. An eleventh generation Rowleyite, Bob will be laid to rest in Rowley cemetery next to his parents a few hundred yards from the Korean War Memorial which bears his name, located in front of his beloved Rowley’s Town Hall, where he first saw his wife to be as she performed on stage in a play in 1949.

The Todd Family would like to thank The Comley family, Sea View, and all the staff for the wonderful care given to Bob and attention given to his wife, Dede Todd, during her daily visits with Bob.

ARRANGEMENTS: His funeral service will be celebrated in the First Congregational Church, 175 Main St., Rowley, on Saturday, March 15, 2014, at 10 a.m. Relatives and friends are respectfully invited. Interment will be in the Main Street Cemetery, Rowley.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to The First Congregational Church of Rowley, P.O. Box 364, Rowley, MA 10969.