Police Chief Kenneth Edward Burge, 62, of Alcoa, Tenn., passed away at his home surrounded by friends and family on Sunday, July 14, 2013. Ken was born on Sept. 29, 1950, in East St. Louis, Ill., and was raised in Fairview Heights, Ill. He graduated from Belleville High School Township East in May, 1968. On March 21 of that same year, he married the love of his life, Miss Bettiann Redden. They were happily married, celebrating 45 years together. Chief Burge attended McKendree College in Lebanon, Ill., and graduated with a B.A. degree in criminal justice. This set him on a career in police work for nearly forty years. He and Bettiann were blessed with two children. Kenneth Kirsten was born on Jan. 17, 1969 and Ginger Leigh was born on May 3, 1976.
Son Kenneth is currently in law enforcement in Colorado, and daughter Ginger is a clinical psychologist in Indiana.
The chief was also the proud grandfather of Kenneth Colton Redden Burge who is a veteran of the US Army
and currently living in Tennessee. Chief Burge had a very successful career in policing. He started as a police officer
in 1974 on the Fairview Heights Illinois Police Force and later in Arvada, Colo. He first became a police chief in 1985, serving in Indianola, Iowa. He then moved about and served as chief of police in Glendale Colo., Sequim Wash., and then finally in Alcoa Tenn. Among his activities during this period he attended the FBI National Academy in 1995 and was an active member in CALEA, a national law enforcement accrediting agency. Accomplishments that further distinguished his career included being a lifetime member of the International Association of Chiefs of Police. He was a member of the board of directors for Blount County, Tenn., 911 and for the 5th Judicial Drug Task Force. He was rightly proud of leading the Alcoa Police Department in its receiving the premier accreditation by CALEA and he was recently approved to be an accredited assessor in that national organization to help other departments to achieve ever higher qualities of law enforcement. Chief Burge was known locally and nationally for his leadership, professional character and personal qualities. Some of his personal interests were enjoying listening to Jimmy Buffet music, traveling, watching movies, and learning about science and astronomy. He had a delightful sense of humor and liked nothing more than hearing or sharing a good story along with a hearty laugh. He was highly valued by his fellow officers for displaying, modeling and expecting the highest level of integrity, honesty, and service. He loved his family deeply and was able to pass on in his home surrounded by that loving family. He will be sorely missed by his officers, the city and his vast collection of family and friends. He is survived by his wife, son, daughter, and grandson as well as his brother, Victor of Fairview Heights Ill.; and his sister, Maureen of San Antonio, Texas.
Those wishing to help keep the memory of the chief alive are welcome to contribute to the Kenneth Burge Memorial Fund in care of Alcoa Tennessee Credit Union. www.SmithMaryville.com
Visitation: Family will receive friends from 4 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, July 17, 2013, at Smith Trinity Chapel, 1402 Tuckaleechee Pike, Maryville, Tenn. 37803.
Funeral: Service will be at 7 p.m. Wednesday, July 17, 2013, at Smith Trinity Chapel with the Rev. Danny Davis officiating.
SMITH FUNERAL & CREMATION SERVICE, Maryville, Tenn.