On Monday, December 16, 2023, Kit McVietty O’Deay, Grants Pass business owner and father of six, passed away at age 80, comforted by family and friends, after a long battle with cancer.
Kit was born December 23, 1942, in Moline, Illinois. The eldest of four children, he studied at Louisiana Polytechnic Institute before moving to California and then Colorado, where his hobbyist’s interest in crafting leather goods and candles developed into a passion for and lifelong career in jewelry making. A frequent traveler to Alaska in the 1970s, Kit learned the art of scrimshaw from the Inuit and incorporated it into his work, mixing silver and ivory scrimshaw designs with the turquoise and coral popular in the American Southwest to create a style unique to him.
Kit relocated to Grants Pass in the early 1980s, finding a harmony between the town’s close-knit, artistic spirit and the wild beauty of the Rogue River Valley that resonated deeply with him. He opened A Right Now Jewelry and Repair, where he expanded into fine gems and exotic metals. Throughout his nearly 50 years as a jeweler, he crafted countless original pieces that showcased his talent, adaptability, and mastery of different styles. Kit was involved in Scouts with his sons and taught his daughters to ride horseback when they were toddlers. He was a daredevil in his youth, a practical joker always, and a born storyteller.
Kit is preceded in death by his parents, Bernard O’Deay and Ruth Barbara (Whimpey) O’Deay, and his brother Kraig O’Deay. He is survived by his children, Sadie O’Deay Carnes, Amy O’Deay, Heather (Andy) Moschetta, Drew (Sean) Monaghan-O’Deay, Matthew (Ashlei McCrery) O’Deay, and Marcus O’Deay; grandsons Torrin Carnes and Enzo Moschetta; sister Kathleen (Keith) Ennis, brother Kerry O’Deay; and nieces, step-nephews, great-nieces, and great-nephews.
Memorial private. In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to the Rogue Valley Humane Society (roguevalleyhumanesociety.org) or the Cutaneous Lymphoma Foundation (clfoundation.org).