Wednesday, March 16, 2016
4:00 PM to 7:00 PM EDT
Life Story Funeral Homes - Rupert, Durham, Marshall & Gren
409 South Main Street
Vicksburg, MI 49097
Please wear something green
At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.
South Kalamazoo County Fire Authority
125 S. Main Street
Vicksburg, MI 49097
National Brittany Rescue and Adoption Network
PO Box 5046
Greensburg, PA 15601-5058
Below is the contact information for a florist recommended by the funeral home.
Life Story / Obituary
Throughout his rich and rewarding life, Kenneth “Ken” Flinn lived life to the fullest each day. He was a hard working man who also knew that life is about having fun, too. Ken was never one to let life get the best of him, rather, he found joy even in the little things. A devoted family man, he was blessed to share the majority of his life with his true love, and together they witnessed their family tree blossom to include the children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren he treasured. Deeply loved, he leaves behind a priceless collection of memories that his family and friends will forever hold near and dear to their hearts.
Life during the 1930s was anything but easy as the entire decade was cloaked in the hardship of the Great Depression. Jobs were scarce, the unemployment rate soared, and things were only further complicated when a drought covered our nation’s heartland for nearly two years. It was while deeply entrenched in the thick of these trying days that Theodore and Ethel (Rohr) Flinn were able to shift their focus on an exciting time in their lives as they were eagerly awaiting the birth of their new baby as winter held the city of Schoolcraft, Michigan, firmly in its grip in February of 1932. The big day finally arrived on February 26th when the baby boy they named Kenneth Wayne drew his first breath. He was the oldest of three children in his family as his younger brothers, Richard and Duane, followed him. Ken’s father worked as a carpenter while his mother stayed home but later worked at Schoolcraft schools.
In many ways, Ken was a young man of his generation. He attended local schools where he played both football and basketball and was also the vice president of his class. In addition to holding down his studies, Ken worked for the state highway department. He graduated in 1951 and continued working for the highway department, making it his 40 year career before retiring in 1989.
Not to be forgotten, as a young man was Ken’s introduction to the woman with whom he would spend the best years of his life. Her name was Bernice Burlew, and they met in a rather unusual way as she was going out with another guy at the time. As the story goes, Ken was the better guy, and he made sure to make the most of it as he was known to brag that he won her in an auction! After falling deeply in love, the sweethearts were married on April 28, 1957. Together they welcomed four beautiful children including Kirk, Balinda, Beth, and Kevin into their hearts and home. An important part of Ken’s family life was his Brittany Spaniels, some of which were adopted by him because friends knew of his love for the dogs.
Aside from his family, Ken’s greatest joy was found in the outdoors. He absolutely loved being out in nature and always said that you can see God when you plant a seed in the ground and watch it grow. Ken had a hobby farm for years and worked hard raising cows, pigs, rabbits, chicken, hay, and corn. At some point he had a little of everything on that farm including a super chicken that was very protective and was known to keep people from even getting out of their cars! In keeping with his love for the outdoors, Ken loved hunting, fishing, and running trap lines in addition to mushroom hunting. One of his favorite places to be was at his property up North in Lake County, but he traveled all over the United States in their travel trailer. Ken also experienced memorable trips to Alaska and British Columbia. Closer to home he was also content to just get in his truck with his dogs and drive down to a pond on one of his properties to feed the fish. It wasn’t ever too hard to know where Ken was as he had a great whistle that could be heard from miles away. He was always so proud of his Irish heritage, enjoyed country music, and as someone who could find a use for anything, Ken was quite the collector.
All who knew Kenneth Flinn would agree that he was an extraordinary man to know and love. He was a true character and a real jokester who loved having fun in everything he did. Ken adored his family and took great pride in being an American, and he was also an animal lover through and through. He lived a full life and will never be forgotten.
Kenneth W. Flinn, of Schoolcraft, passed away on Sunday March 13, 2016. Ken’s family includes his wife, Bernice; four children: Kirk (Cindy Summerville) Flinn, of Schoolcraft; Balinda (Donald) Flinn-Dodson, of Schoolcraft; Beth (Werner Magg)Flinn, of Kalamazoo; Kevin Flinn, of Schoolcraft; four grandchildren: Kelly, Nathan, Emily, and Ariel; two great grandchildren: Zackery and Killian; and brother: Richard (Beverly) Flinn, of Vicksburg. Ken was preceded in death by one brother, Duane Flinn and his parents. The family will receive friends on Wednesday, from 4-7 p.m., Life Story Funeral Home, 409 S. Main, Vicksburg (269-649-1697). The funeral service will be on Thursday at 11 a.m. at the funeral home. The family request that you please wear something green. Please visit www.lifestorynet.com where you can sign the guestbook and share a memory and/or photo. Those who wish may make contributions to the South County Fire and Rescue, and/or www.americanbrittanyrescue.org.