Col. Kenneth Lee Abney, of Fort Walton Beach, Fla., passed away Friday, Oct. 18, after a brief illness. He was born Oct. 31, 1927, in Calhoun, Ky. In 1943 he married his sweetheart, Kathryn McDaniel. Three years later he enlisted in the U.S. Air Force thus beginning a military career of nearly 30 years. In 1952 Ken was selected for the U.S. Air Force's Bootstrap commissioning program. Commissioned as a second lieutenant in June 1953, he continued his military career in communications and electronics. The Abneys had two children, Eddie and Sheila. Ken's education continued as he earned a B.S. from Oklahoma State, a M.A. from Florida State and attended the Industrial College of the Armed Forces. Col. Abney was twice assigned to Eglin Air Force Base and commanded the 2146th Communications group in Korea. While at Eglin Ken was a ham radio operator and assisted the Sheriff's Department during hurricanes and other severe weather conditions. After his retirement he enjoyed gardening and other activities. The family requests donations, in place of flowers, be made to the Alzheimer's Foundation of America to support research into Alzheimer's disease. Visitation will be held Thursday, Oct 24, from 2 to 5 p.m., at Emerald Coast Funeral Home with final services being held Friday at 11 a.m., with internment at Beal Memorial Cemetery following that service.
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Emerald Coast Funeral Home
113 Racetrack Rd NE
Fort Walton Beach, FL 32547
Published Online in Northwest Florida Daily News on Oct. 24, 2013