George Smart said he had not got a word out his neighbour in two years.He would see him walking by dressed in the classic nerd's anorak, head down, hands shoved into pockets.
For the man who killed 16 children and their teacher in Dunblane Primary School- and who would have murdered two more teachers and 12 more children if his aim had been surer - was not simply a deranged loner.
He did have an ingratiating, almost oily manner but I put that down to the buffetings he received." Mr Saunders took the view that Hamilton was innocent until proved guilty and so did dozens of others.
When he was wearing his tie, Thomas Hamilton's enthusiasm for turning boys into athletes and his insistent denials of guilt could be very convincing indeed.
And as for the anorak the other neighbours mocked, well, she said, he "always wore a collar and tie underneath".
As the investigations into the life of Thomas Hamilton developed, it slowly became possible to recognise the man that Mrs Kerr knew.