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Dee Funeral Home & Cremation Services since 1868

Weikang "Kevin" Wu

December 30, 1955 November 18, 2018
Weikang "Kevin" Wu
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Obituary for Weikang "Kevin" Wu

Weikang “Kevin” Wu, age 62, of Boston, and a former longtime Carlisle resident, passed away on Sunday, November 18, 2018, following a tremendous battle with pancreatic cancer.

He was born in Hangzhou, China on December 30, 1955 to his mother, Yunxiang Xu, and his father, the late Huai Wu.

Kevin grew up in Ningbo, China, a port city south of Shanghai. He was the second youngest of five siblings and was always up to some mischief. His life was shaped by his curiosity and love of learning. During the Cultural Revolution, when all universities in China were closed, for years he would hide on the top floor of a defunct library to continue learning. This went on until he read every single science book in the library. For years, while Kevin thought he himself would never get the opportunity to go to college, he taught at his former high school, so those younger than him would be ready to take advantage of their chance if they received it. Late in 1976, the Revolution ended, and enrollment of universities was reinstated for everyone. Kevin ranked as one of the top students in his province, and he was admitted to the University of Science and Technology in Hefei, China. While studying in Hefei, he met his loving wife and life-long best friends. Upon graduation, Kevin was selected for one of the first scholarships to graduate school in the United States. In 1982, Kevin moved to the United States, and went on to earn his Ph.D. degree in Physics at Stony Brook University. His thesis was on the Effective Low Energy Theory of Conducting Polymers. From there, Kevin made a home in North America for his family.

His daughter and son learned to love the thrill of creating new things from their dad. He started his life in Canada as a postdoctoral researcher at McMaster University. Right after his academic career in Physics, he joined MPB in Montreal, Canada, and, with many fellow physicists, worked on radar defense projects. Then he joined Nortel in Ottawa, Canada, working on their telecommunication network. After Nortel, Kevin left large companies to play his hand at Internet startups. He and his family moved back to the United States, and Kevin joined a startup in on Long Island called Netilla Networks with his dear friend Suiling. From there, the family moved to Boston where Kevin’s children would grow up, and Kevin joined Sycamore Networks. After Sycamore Networks, Kevin joined Thoratec Corporation, a medical devices company. At Thoratec, Kevin wrote embedded software for the left ventricular assist device (LVAD) and devoted 14 years to creating impeccable systems that gave people more high-quality life that their own hearts could not provide. After Thoratec, Kevin went back to his younger ways and joined a startup called Corindus Vascular Robotics. There, he worked day and night, seven days a week with the team, racing towards creating medical robotics, which would protect cardiologists from radiation – the same specialty of medicine his son is training for.

Since Kevin was in high school, he loved playing volleyball and ping pong – hobbies he carried with great joy for the rest of his life. His loved ones like to brag about his reign of company ping pong championships, and his children loved laughing about his incredible hand-eye coordination and reflexes. He was always willing to play, even just hours after knee surgery and up to two days before starting chemotherapy. With volleyball, Kevin played as a setter, though his favorite position was playing that of a team leader. He always insisted that the team ignore daunting odds, not to celebrate or lament until each game had concluded, and to stay hyper-focused on each point that came – the mentality needed for underdogs to overcome. He became an avid hiker while living in New England. Although he never played himself, Kevin discovered a deep passion for hockey during his early years in Canada, which he later instilled into his Canadian-born son. He was a lifelong, unwavering Toronto Maple Leafs fan, a perennial underdog team. He enjoyed a father-son tradition of venturing into enemy Boston Bruins territory every winter around his birthday to root for the visiting Leafs.

In addition to athletics, he was an avid reader and spent many nights up late poring over newspapers. He constantly surprised his family with thoughtful opinions on an unexpected range of current events and topics, and he always had quippy one liners that made everyone laugh. He will be missed as the most clever, handy, quirky engineer his children have ever met. He could fix anything, solve any problem, and took pride in taking care of his family’s home. He was always coming up with creative solutions for his family – in home improvement or life’s larger challenges. He unfailingly faced any stress with such clarity, often citing his unofficial mantra to “take it easy.” His family will miss the look in his eyes when he turned his attention to a problem, gears turning. After turning his head up to the sky slightly, he’d go off, and return shortly with some scrap paper, a pen, the right tools, and then get to work. He insisted on perfection and dogged determination, never setting aside a task until it was completed.
Kevin was filled with pride for his family, and more than anything, his family is so proud of him.

In addition to his mother, he leaves behind his beloved wife of 34 years, Xiaoming “Charmaine” Wan, two devoted children, Stephan and Ileana Wu, and his siblings: Weimin Wu, Jian Wu, Weilin Wu, and Weiguo Wu.

Family and friends are invited to gather for visiting hours on Sunday, November 25th from 2 to 5 pm in the Dee Funeral Home, 27 Bedford Street, Concord Center. His funeral service will be held on Monday, November 26th at 9:30 am in the First Parish, 20 Lexington Road, Concord Center. Private burial services will follow in Carlisle.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that contributions be made in his memory to Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, P.O. Box 849168, Boston, MA 02284 (www.myjimmyfundpage.org/give/kevinwu).

Arrangements are under the care of Dee Funeral Home & Cremation Service of Concord.


Previous Events

Visitation

Sunday

25

Nov

2:00 PM 11/25/2018 2:00:00 PM - 5:00 PM 11/25/2018 5:00:00 PM
Dee Funeral Home of Concord

27 Bedford Street
Concord, MA 01742

Dee Funeral Home of Concord
27 Bedford Street Concord 01742 MA
United States

Funeral Service

Monday

26

Nov

9:30 AM 11/26/2018 9:30:00 AM
First Parish in Concord

20 Lexington Road
Concord, MA 01742

First Parish in Concord
20 Lexington Road Concord 01742 MA
United States
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