Audiogon Celebrates the Life of Gary Kerr of The Audio Gallery

With sadness and great respect, we say good-bye to our long-time Member Gary Kerr of the Audio Gallery in Lake Oswego, Oregon.  Together with his beloved wife Cindy, they touched hundreds of lives with their audio expertise and built a rich, lively network of friends around the country.  Cindy says it best:

Gary Kerr  (February 1, 1954 – February 5, 2012)

It is with both a deep sense of loss and yet full awareness of Divine Love that I announce the passing of Gary Kerr of The Audio Gallery in Lake Oswego, OR on Feb 5, 2012.

Gary and I wish to thank each of you with whom we’ve done business or simply shared the passion of music over the past 22 years as proprietors of The Audio Gallery. Our desire is for the transforming power and beauty of music to always be present in your hearts and lives. We feel grateful to have been able to be a part of that experience!

Gary was a most incredible person. I know because I’ve had the privilege of sharing Life with him for 35 years! Injured in a car accident at age 2 which left him paralyzed from the chest down, he overcame obstacles that would be insurmountable for most humans, and yet, he never uttered a word of complaint or discouragement.

He was the embodiment of Nike’s “JUST DO IT.” Passionate and competitive, he became the fastest man in the world in a wheelchair (regardless of disability) in the 1500M track event and the 10K road race and was the inventor/developer or the 3 wheeled racing chairs that are the standard today. He was inducted into the USA Wheelchair Sports Hall of Fame in 1996 for his contributions to wheelchair athletics as an innovator in training, as a designer and as world class athlete. His abilities took him on adventures to race all over the world. He was part of the USA Olympic team (able bodied) during the Summers of 1980 and 1981, representing the USA in the 1500M track event on the European Circuit.

When he reached his zenith as a racer in the late ’80s, he gave much thought as to what he would passionately pursue next… He loved music and was an audio hobbiest as far back as a young child, helping his neighbor put together Heathkit electronics and listen to jazz LPs and much rock n’ roll! When we married in 1978, we didn’t have a stitch of furniture, except for a bed and a “killer stereo.” What else does one need… 🙂

The resulting decision was a natural,”Let’s do a high performance audio store!” And the idea became reality.

Our journey began with this thoughtful wish in 1988 when we lived in Clovis, CA. With the encouragement of such wonderful people as George Cardas, Robert Becker of SOTA, Glen Grou of Classe Audio, Prof. Keith Johnson, Scott Franklin of MFA and a short time later, Charlie Hansen of Ayre Acoustics along with Neil Patel and Lucien Pichette of Avalon Acoustics, The Audio Gallery was humbly and lovingly born out of our home in January 1990. When it grew to overtake our house, with systems set-up in every room, we knew it was time to move!

Our search landed us in Lake Oswego, OR in 1994 where we found a dirt and grease filled former Napa Auto Parts store and engine rebuilding space. We knew “this was it” at first sight. Oh, what a labor of love to transform that space. We were the General Contractors. Gary was the able architect who drew up each room thoughtfully with Sacred Geometry. I was the interior designer and we both used our innate Feng Shui abilities to keep it all in balance. It had a most wonderful look and feel that always evolved over the years – as did Gary and I. Very peaceful & serene yet imbued with fire. We wanted to be sure that Art Blakey felt equally comfortable with Heinrich Biber!

The Triumphant Gary Kerr Gary with Shirley Horn - a piece of Heaven

Each of you has played a part in Gary’s life in helping him to become the special person he was during his time here. He wanted to express his gratitude to you for the gift you were in his life. Gary was not one for “Pomp and Circumstance” but I know he did enjoy a Victory Lap now and then when the fruits of his efforts shined. 🙂 His request was not for a ceremony but rather that you might “Celebrate Life” in his honor for a moment by putting on your most favorite piece of music and thinking of him, surrounding yourself with the people in your life that are most dear and telling them how much they mean to you. Gratitude is the Key to the Universe.

The truth that has circled our past days, sings out so clearly…  “And in the end, the Love you take, is equal to the Love you make.” Our paraphrase: “All there is, is LOVE.”

Gary, Cindy and soul brother Frank Schroder at The Audio Gallery

We’ve enjoyed 18 years in our Lake Oswego, OR retail location and it is now officially closed. “To every thing there is a season, and a time for every purpose under Heaven.”

I will be liquidating many wonderful products in the days ahead on Audiogon to complete this process and be able to move forward. I again wish to thank each of you for your patronage over the years and hope to be of service once again during this time of closure for The Audio Gallery.

An Irish Blessing for each of you:

With Gratitude,                                                                                                                          Cindy Kerr                                                                                                                               The Audio Gallery                                                                                                                Lake Oswego, OR                                                                              


  1. Cindy, I am very sorry to hear the news of Gary’s passing. When I was a sales rep in your area my favorite thing was visiting your store to listen to all the great systems you assembled. You and Gary always treated me like royalty even though I could never afford to buy from you. I will always remember that and wish other high end stores would do the same. God bless you during this time of sadness and change.

  2. Very sorry to hear about Gary’s passing. Many years ago I ran marathons in California and
    Okinawa, Japan and I witnessed many wheel chair competitors but never knew about Gary’s
    connection with them. I have watched or attebted the Olympic Games since the 1960 games,
    Now, for the past 3 years I have been selling jazz, blues and classical music on Audiogon. I only
    wished I could have met Gary so we could have exchanged many stories about music and Track
    And Field events. My thoughts and prayers go out to Gary’s family. L.E. Collins (Eddiesan)

  3. Hi Cindy,
    I am so sorry for your loss. You and I did business briefly on an amp stand recently and it was a true pleasure working with you. You impressed me from our very first communication.
    I wish you peace and all the very best with any and all of your future endeavors.
    Take care,

  4. Although I never had the pleasure of meeting you and Gary, your story has touched my heart1
    Baraka Bashad! May the Blessings Be!

  5. Hi Cindy,
    I feel sadness too when I’ve read today about Gary’s passing. Though I was not lucky to know him and you in person (but I had a pleasant transaction with you last September), the brief and lovely description of Gary’s life made me feel he was a REAL MAN! Now I am sure that the cinema character of Forest Gump had lively prototypes in life, and Gary was one of them.
    Let there be LOVE and LIGHT in your life without Gary.
    Warm regards, Sergey.

    1. Hi Sergey!

      Thank you for your lovely observations and sentiments about Gary. Love never fails and I am grateful to be sustained in Love and Light throughout this time of transition in Life.

      With Gratitude,

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