Kenneth Kay Profile Photo
1942 Kenneth 2019

Kenneth Kay

November 29, 1942 — September 23, 2019

Kenneth C. Kay, 76, of Atlantic, passed away Monday, September 23, 2019, at the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha.

Kenneth (Ken) Christian Kay was born November 29, 1942, in Atlantic, the middle of three sons of Henry and Zoe (Boseck) Kay. He began attending country school at the age of four in Brighton Township. He graduated from Atlantic High School in 1960 where he was First Team All Conference in Football. Immediately following graduation, he entered the Army Reserve where he was awarded Honorman of his company. Ken then enrolled at Iowa State University, joined Farmhouse Fraternity and graduated in 1964 with a B.S. in Farm Operations.

Ken was the ultimate conversationalist; recounting events new and old with a sparkle in his eye. His adventures as a young boy growing up on a farm provided lots of material for his tales. One of his favorite stories was how he met and began dating Jerilyn Jean Johnson while attending ISU. On September 4, 1965, he married Jerilyn at the Holmes Lutheran Church in Holmes, Iowa. Ken had a zest for life, a fondness of people and a love for his family. Ken and Jerilyn raised their four children, John, Lisa, Paul and Sarah, on a farm north of Atlantic, always encouraging them to pursue their ambitions.

Ken farmed his entire life; he planted corn and soybeans and raised pigs and cattle. He loved every aspect of farming, including the science behind finding the perfect seed corn. Ken was a proud Iowan and civic leader. He was chairman of both the American and Iowa Farm Bureau Young Farmers and Ranchers Committee, a member of the American Farm Bureau Board of Directors, and president of the Cass County Farm Bureau. He served two terms on the Atlantic School Board, including serving as president. He was president of the Lions Club and a board member of the Equitrust Mutual Fund and also First Whitney Bank and Trust. Ken attended the First United Presbyterian Church, serving as a deacon and an elder. In addition to farming, he had a life-long passion for fishing and reading, including the three newspapers he read daily.

Ken is survived by his wife of 54 years, Jerilyn; and children, John (Angela) Kay of Atlantic, Lisa (Chad) Williams of Vancouver, WA, Paul (Paulette) Kay of Burlington, Sarah (Mike) Gimbel of Bettendorf; and nine grandchildren, Dylan, Daniel, Anna, Ellie, Owen, Elizabeth, Andrew, Jack and Will; brother, Richard (Kathy) Kay; sisters-in-law, Jan Kay, Barbara (Bruce) Palmer, Jamie Hughet; and brother-in-law, David (DeAnn) Johnson; and many nieces, nephews and cousins.

Ken was preceded in passing by his parents, Henry and Zoe Kay, and his brother, Dennis Kay.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorials be made to the Atlantic Community School Foundation or First United Presbyterian Church.

Funeral services will be held at 10:30 am, Saturday, September 28, 2019, at First United Presbyterian Church in Atlantic, Iowa, with Rev. Rachelle McCalla officiating. Burial will be at 9:30 a.m. Saturday, September 28, 2019, at the Atlantic Cemetery.

Visitation will be held at Hockenberry Funeral Home from 5:00-7:00 p.m. on Friday, September 27, 2019.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Kenneth Kay, please visit our flower store.

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