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Cambridge, MA - Ridgely Howard "Jake" Duvall passed from this world on October 26, after scuba diving in the waters off of Gloucester, Mass. Jake was born in Princeton, N.J., on December 8, 1952. His parents, Severn Duvall Jr. and Nan Duvall lived with their three children, Jake, Sev, and Mary in Hanover, N.H., and, in 1962, moved to Lexington, Va., where Severn Duvall taught English at Washington and Lee University.

Jake attended Mt Hermon School in the late 1960s (class of 1971) and graduated from Lexington High School. He attended Washington and Lee for a period but moved to Boston, Mass., in the early 1970s, where he lived happily ever since. Jake spent the next approximately 10 years in Boston, developing his extraordinary cooking and wine skills. He attended the New England Conservatory and studied, and subsequently practiced, music composition.

In 1985 Jake and Kathy Lum were married in Cambridge, Mass., their home ever since. Their marriage was a fusion of Boston and New York, Red Sox and Mets, French and Chinese cuisines. Their pursuits carried Jake and Kathy around the globe and through these and other interests their lives were shared generously with many, many friends and family.

Jake became an avid scuba diver in the 1980s; a serious pursuit that also served to further his travel and love of exotic ingredients. In the last decades, Jake traveled to nearly every major dive location, staying in both luxurious and plain accommodations, and interacting with people around the globe. Since the 1990s, Jake and Kathy split their time between Cambridge and Gloucester, Mass., where they lived in Bayview. Jake was an avid Gloucester diver, gardener and caretaker of a place he and Kathy loved beyond measure.

Jake's amazing gifts, for which we all knew and loved him, include food and wine, photography, oceanography, different cultures, birds, southern heritage at times, and making children laugh. In addition to friends too numerous to mention, Jake is sadly missed by his wife of 34 years, Katherine Lum; siblings Sev Duvall of Westport, Conn. (Louise, Eliza and Sarah); Mary Duvall of Boulder, Colo. (Vlad and Lily); Danek Duvall of San Francisco, Calif.; and his step-mother, Tamara Duvall of Lexington, Va. Jake's parents predeceased him.

Memorial plans are pending. In lieu of flowers, please remember Jake with a donation to oceanographic environmental causes and the Boston Sea Rovers Summer Internship.
Published on November 6, 2019


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Nov 15, 2019
I'm so sorry Kathy !
Nov 06, 2019
Hi there,

I’m a Gloucester native who had the pleasure of getting to know Jake during my years in the Cambridge restaurant world. His passion for food and wine was infectious, and he was incredibly generous with his knowledge and good spirit. I am deeply sorry to hear of his passing and wish his family well.