Whalen, Kenneth R.
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Kenneth R. (Pa), Whalen, 83, Wausau died Sunday, April 14, 2013 under the care of Interim Hospice and Palliative Care at his home, surrounded by his loving family.
Ken was born February 23, 1930 in Chicago, son of the late Richard and Regina (Novak) Whalen. On January 22, 1955 he married the love of his life, Karene "Kay" O'Grady at Sacred Heart Church Palos Hills, IL.
He has touched many lives with his kindness, caring heart and selflessness always putting others first. What he enjoyed most was spending time with his family, enjoying his children's and grandchildren's accomplishments always encouraging them to do their best and cheering them on.
He served his country in the Navy aboard the USS Toledo as a fire control technician. Following the navy he attended college and spent many years working with top secret clearance developing radar jamming equipment for the government. He developed and built the original machines which manufacture the colostomy/ileostomy seals currently worn by patients today. He retired at age 70 from Fiskars Manufacturing where he considered his employees his extended family. He enjoyed musky fishing and guided for the Word Musky Hunt having the privilege to guide astronaut Deke Slayton.
Survivors include his wife, Kay Whalen, Wausau, his children, Kathi (Randy) Geiger and Kerry (Missy) Whalen, both of Wausau, and Kristi (Franz) Whalen-Brunner, Florida, five grandchildren, Kristina and Alex Geiger, Carissa, Jake and Mariah Whalen, two step grandchildren, Jennifer (Steve) Kimock and Nicole (Tim) Cogswell and four step great grandchildren, Skyler, Ryland, Nyle, Emmi, one adopted granddaughter, Vera Otterstein, Germany and his faithful dog Chance who never left his side during his illness.
Besides his parents he was preceded in death by one brother, Donald Whalen and a very special brother-in-law, Rudy Pallotto.
Funeral services will be held at 11:30 a.m. Saturday, April 20, 2013 at the Peterson/Kraemer Funeral Home, 1302 Sixth Street, Wausau. The Rev. Jeffrey Hinds will officiate. Friends may call on Friday from 4:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. and again on Saturday from 10:00 a.m. until the time of services all at the Sixth Street funeral home. Online condolences may be expressed at www.petersonkraemer.com
Published in the Wausau Daily Herald on Apr. 17, 2013