Rodney (Rod) Downing Farrow died peacefully in his sleep at his home on Abel’s Hill on Jan. 23. He was 86.

He first came to Martha’s Vineyard in the summer of 1940 and returned every year until making it his permanent home in 1991.

Rod and his twin sister, Katherine (Kit) Farrow Jorrens, were born in Rochester, N.Y. on March 15, 1935 to Edward Samuel Farrow and Ruth Wilson Farrow. They joined older siblings Betty Ruth and Ted. His mother died in 1947 and his father subsequently married Marjorie (Marnie) Backus Farrow. Marnie and Ed had two children, Peter and Mary.

He graduated from the Kent School in 1953 and from Yale University in 1957. In 1958, he married Betty Steele. They lived in Rochester and raised their three children there. He enjoyed a career at Eastman Kodak from 1958 until retirement.

He had fond memories of summer visits to Martha’s Vineyard from his youth. His father worked at Eastman Kodak as a chemical engineer and his mother was a talented photographer who had access to early prototypes of Kodak’s motion picture film. Many of the movies she took captured life on the Island in the 1920s, 30s and 40s. Rod cared deeply about the legacy of his mother’s movies. He worked with Tom Dunlop at the Vineyard Gazette to convert them to a digital format. The original films and digital copies were then donated to the Martha’s Vineyard Museum.

His many interests included architecture, music, photography and cars. Family and friends were also important to him. Over the years, many people were lucky to get invited on the “walk:” a 12-mile hike along the shore of the Vineyard from Philbin Beach in Aquinnah to Chilmark Pond. The walks always produced stories of the adventure and a day well spent with a friend or family member.

Rod was a planner at heart. “Measure twice, cut once” was a motto he lived by. He taught all those around him the benefits of careful planning, and his many contributions to the Abel’s Hill community and to his family reflect this.

He is survived by Betty, his wife of 63 years; his daughters Lee Farrow Cook and her husband Bob, Amy Farrow Thomas and her husband Jeff, and Kris Farrow Culp and her husband Rob; grandchildren Christina and Katherine Cook, Kayla and Cole Thomas, and Wes and Evie Culp; and many nieces and nephews and their families. He was predeceased by all of his siblings.

His wife and daughters especially thank Mary Kamau and Sandie Corr-Dolby for their generous care during Rod’s final year of life.

A memorial service will be held in Abel’s Hill Cemetery in August 2022.

Donations can be made to an organization of choice.