In Loving Memory of Kenneth Leon Kilgore
June 8, 1935 ~ April 27, 2014
Kenneth Leon Kilgore passed away, surrounded by his family, at the age of 78, on April 27, 2014. He was born in Lamont, WA on June 8, 1935, on a wheat ranch. At the age of six months, his parents, Leon J. Kilgore and Florence Kilgore, purchased the homesteaded ranch in Colville, WA.
Ken attended school in Spokane, WA and graduated from Colville High School in 1954. He married Donna Crippen on March 26, 1955. Ken was one of the first employees at Vaagen Brother’s Lumber and worked alongside Burt and Bud Vaagen. In 1964, he took a job as an assistant forester at the Little Pend Orielle Wildlife Refuge. In 1972, he transferred to Colockum Wildlife Game Range, near Wenatchee, WA, as a land manager, where he worked until his retirement in 1997. He was largely responsible for introducing the turkey and big horn sheep populations to the Wenatchee area and was heavily involved in the Wenatchee Sportsman’s Association, where he headed numerous work parties for wildlife habitat enhancement. He managed the Colockum, Swakane, Entiat and Chelan Butte wildlife areas. He was extremely dedicated to his job and continued land management until his death. In the last hour of his life, he asked if the seeding for the wildlife had been done.
As a child, Ken and his brother, Dan, dreamed of being Pirates, which led to his love of sailing. He and Donna spent many summers sailing the San Juan Islands. They sailed around Vancouver Island in 1998. He had dreams of sailing around the world. After his retirement, Ken and Donna spent time traveling and eventually purchased a home in Yuma, AZ. They spent winters in Yuma and the summers at their ranch in Colville. Ken dedicated his life to his family and his work with wildlife. He will be greatly missed.
He was preceded in death by his parents; and his brother, Dan Kilgore. Ken is survived by his lifelong wife of 59 years, Donna F. (Crippen) Kilgore; his sister, Margaret (Kilgore) Cook of San Bernardino, CA; son, Kirk Kilgore and wife, Stacey of Malaga, WA; and daughters, Linda Day and husband, Martin of Cashmere, WA, Lori Reinbold and husband, Tim of East Wenatchee, WA, and Denise Johnson and husband, Daniel of Bothell, WA. He is also survived by seven grandchildren, Stephanie Lopez, Keshya Kilgore, Stacy Stanaway, Brandon Kilgore, Jordan Johnson, Riley Johnson, and Elijah Johnson; and nine great-grandchildren.
A Private Family Memorial for Mr. Kilgore will be held at a later date. Memorial contributions may be given to Shriner’s Hospital. Please visit the online memorial and sign the guestbook at www.danekasfuneralchapel.com. Danekas Funeral Chapel & Crematory has been entrusted with the arrangements.