Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Requiem for a friend

I am sorry to forward the sad news about Ken Myers' passing last Monday afternoon. Today I received information about Ken's funeral which I will pass on for anyone who is interested.

A memorial service is being planned for Saturday, November 14 at 2:00 PM at Beck Funeral Home (1700 E Whitestone Blvd (FM 1431), Cedar Park, TX 78613) outside of Round Rock.

One of Ken's favorite charities was a group called Brown Santa, a community service of the Travis County Sheriff's Department. This is a program that distributes toys and gifts to children at Christmas and food for the Christmas dinner. According to his wife, Jan, Ken would collect toys all year long, choosing a toy for a different age group each week. In December they would bring all the toys to the local dropoff. Jan said this always made him feel fabulous.

It's fitting that Jan has asked that in lieu of flowers, people consider making a donation to Brown Santa. Donations are tax deductable and can be mailed to: Travis County Brown Santa, P O Box 207, Austin, TX 78767-0207, or visit the website and use the Donate button to make a secure online donation through PayPal.

I'm not surprised to learn this about Ken, but I am surprised. Those of us who work with others professionally often develop a sense about the quality of our professional friends; but most of the time we either do not have the time, or take the time to get to know each other on a deeper level. I always consider it a privilege when someone lets me "in" by opening a door into their personal life, revealing a valued hobby or talking about children or spouses. While I don't expect to get to know all of my colleagues on a personal level, it's nice when you get confirmation about the high character of a person you've respected on a professional level.

Ken will be deeply missed by his many colleagues and friends. As a former PMP, and Executive Director of the Texas Pest Management Association, Ken was a true professional, as dedicated as anyone I knew to strengthening the pest management profession in Texas. He was also a veteran of Desert Storm; but when I picture him now I guess I'll see him in my mind wearing a Santa Claus cap. Godspeed Ken.

1 comment:

Elissa Conte-Koczela said...

Thank you for your kind words about my dear friend Ken (who I affectionately called "Kenji"). I have been friends with Ken for over 30 years and he was my husband's college roomate. Back on Long Island in NYC we would go boating with Ken when he borrowed his dad's boat---We would often marvel at his ability to dock that large boat while we partied on the way over to Fire Island! On a visit here one year we were walking downtown and Ken noticed an elderly person struggling to get out of her car. In the middle of our conversation and without missing a beat Ken ran out and helped the woman to the sidewalk safely. This was just a small example of his empathy towards others.
His wife Jan became a very special friend as well...They were a great match for eachother.
I am grieving for the loss of a dear friend... a life that left our world a better place than it was before...I honor the life of someone very special who will always be remembered with love.