Kenneth W. Ward, 86, of White Pigeon, passed away Saturday, Nov. 2, 2013, at Borgess Medical Center in Kalamazoo.
Ken was born Oct. 11, 1927, in Detroit, to Earl and Jewel Ward.
After graduating from Detroit Northern High School, Ken proudly served his country in the U.S. Army. In fall 1948, Ken entered Michigan State College, where he first saw Lois Milham singing in the choir at Peoples Church and he recognized her to be “the most beautiful girl in the room.” On Aug. 2, 1952, Ken and Lois married in Watervliet. He received a Master of School Administration degree from Western Michigan University.
Ken is survived by his loving wife, Lois, married 61 years; seven children, Lois (John) Turnage of Pleasantville, Iowa, Carolyn (Don) Kanicki of Rockland, Maine, Robert (Nancy) Ward of Grand Rapids, John (Nina) Ward of Sacramento, Calif., Donna Ward of White Pigeon, Ann (Bobby) Adams of DeLand, Fla., and James Ward of Atlanta; a brother, Don (Bette) Ward of Burlington, N.C.; and seven grandchildren, Mark, Megan and Michelle Turnage and Kaitlin, Emily, Jennevieve and Madeline Ward.
Ken began his career as a high school teacher and athletic coach in Wagener, S.C., in 1952. In 1956, Ken and Lois moved with “little Lois” to Bridgman, where he continued teaching and coaching and eventually became the principal at Bridgman High School. In 1965, Ken took the position as principal of Galesburg-Augusta High School until 1974, when he made his final career move to principal of White Pigeon High School. Ken retired from the White Pigeon Community School District in 1986.
Ken had many accomplishments throughout his career, but none made him more proud than being the father of his “seven wonderful children.” He was a true sportsman, earning a varsity letter playing baseball at Michigan State College. Ken loved all sports, but was most proud of his golf game, bragging about how he could shoot his age. He enjoyed his golfing buddies, the Michigan State Spartans and the Detroit Tigers.
Visitation will be from 2-7 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 6, 2013, at Farrand Funeral Home, 300 N. Kalamazoo St., White Pigeon. A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Thursday, Nov. 7 at White Pigeon United Methodist Church, 204 N. Kalamazoo St.
Ken maintained active leadership roles throughout his life with Olivet Congregational Church (Bridgman); Galesburg United Methodist Church; and White Pigeon United Methodist Church. The family requests memorial contributions be made to White Pigeon United Methodist Church or to St. Joseph County Commission on Aging.