Wednesday, September 21, 2016
1:00 PM EDT
Rosedale Memorial Park
0-50 Lake Michigan Drive NW
Grand Rapids, MI 49544
Life Story / Obituary
Throughout his life, Kenneth Arver was a hardworking man who was kindhearted, honest, and a true peacemaker. He loved being out on the open road on his Harley, yet he was also content just sitting back and listening to music. Ken was a car guy throughout his life, and he was very mechanically minded from a young age. Life was not without times of trial for him, but he knew when life was getting the best of him and reached out to family and friends. Life will never be the same without Ken here, but he leaves behind a timeless collection of memories that his friends and loved ones will forever hold near and dear to their heart.
The 1960s were an exciting time in American history. It was during this decade that we elected the young John F. Kennedy, only to mourn his death a few years later, yet there was also great celebration when America became the first nation to put a man on the moon in 1969. It was just as this decade was dawning in Grand Rapids, Michigan, that Dale and Frances (Heible) Arver were eagerly anticipating the birth of their new baby. The big day finally arrived when the baby boy they named Kenneth Dale drew his first breath on January 22, 1960. He was the third of four children in the family as he was joined in his family by his older brother, David, his older sister, Connie, both of whom were much older, and his younger brother, Steven. Ken’s earliest years were spent in the family home on Waterford Court, but when he was in middle school the family moved to a home on Seven Mile Road in Rockford. As a family they also enjoyed many weekends at the cottage on Indian Lakes where Ken liked to swim, fish, and also did a little water skiing. He was the likely one to bring home the snapping turtle or water snake, which always kept his mom on her toes.
In many ways Ken was a young man of his generation. Around the house he and Steve liked to ride their dirt bikes, and he was always quite mechanically minded as he loved working on cars and motorcycles. Ken was a car guy throughout his life and was so proud of his muscle cars during his younger years. Ken’s Plymouth Skamp was among his favorites, and he was always tinkering with his cars. Later on he always had to have a newer model car. In school he had a core group of friends, and although they had fun together there was also plenty of mischief!
After graduating from Rockford High School, Ken and a friend rode their motorcycles all the way to Las Vegas. This was certainly his longest adventure as most of his rides were local. Ken found work at Steelcase, and throughout his career there he was not only a skilled worker, but a faithful one as well. He did just about every job on the floor there including running a press, welding, painting, and more as he knew them all. It was also while he was busy working his way around Steelcase that Ken was married to Frances for a few years.
Throughout his life Ken was usually one to keep busy. He did a little hunting, but he primarily liked shooting and target practice using ammunition that he packed himself. Ken was a music lover who liked the classics. He also knew how to play the guitar, which he really enjoyed. Ken had quite the guitar collection, too.
Several years ago Ken was diagnosed with a mental illness that would be his lifetime struggle. Despite his illness he was a hard worker who was responsible, conscientious, and had a huge heart. Ken was a peacemaker who didn’t like arguments and always wanted to help others get along. He could also recognize when he needed help and wasn’t afraid to reach out and ask for help. When his father passed away in 1995, he stepped up, making regular visits home to help his mother with regular tasks. The last years have been more difficult, and Ken suffered with both limited mobility as well as hearing difficulties. He didn’t leave home much except to visit family members or friends at times. Ken always loved his coffee and usually went out for meals. Ken also liked going out for short motorcycle rides in the area as he really loved his Harley Fat Boy. He had a deep faith and enjoyed watching Charles Stanley on television. He was confident in where he would be going at the end of his life.
With a life that spanned times of great change in the world around him, Kenneth Arver was a good and kind man. He could be witty when he wanted to be, and although he could be very opinionated he could also be very open minded. Ken was a loving son, brother, uncle, and friend who will be deeply missed.
Kenneth D. Arver, age 56 of Grand Rapids has now found his true freedom in heaven, healed from his earthly struggles. He was preceded in death by his father, Dale. Ken is survived by his mother, Frances; his brothers and sisters David (Sherry), Connie (Tom) Frakie, Steven (Kim) Arver; as well as nieces, nephews and friends. All are invited to attend his graveside service on Wednesday, September 21 at 1 PM at Rosedale Memorial Park. Friends are then invited to visit with his family on Wednesday from 6-8 PM at Heritage Life Story Funeral Home - Van Strien Creston Chapel, 1833 Plainfield Ave NE. To read more about his life, to share a memory or photo, or to sign his guestbook, visit www.lifestorynet.com