Kenneth W. Grein Jr.
1949 - 2020
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Kenneth W. Grein Jr.

Reno - Ken Grein was born in Lovelock, Nevada on May 15, 1949 and passed away in Reno, Nevada on November 12, 2020. He was a devoted husband, a beloved father and grandfather, a loyal friend and a highly respected community member. Ken always put others before himself. We will remember his strength and relentless drive to always do what was honorable.

Ken was born to Kenneth W Grein Sr. and Velma Jean Herring. His pride for his hometown (Go Mustangs!) was tangible to all who knew Ken as his childhood memories found their way into most conversations.

Ken was a passionate advocate of education, to the point his daughters did not know a college degree was optional. Ken excelled in all he set his mind to. After obtaining his Master's Degree from the University of Nevada, Reno, Ken became a prominent figure among Northern Nevada educators. His career began in 1976 where he served as a teacher for Incline High School. Ken dedicated over 30 years of his life to improving the educational environments of future generations.

His commitment to teaching and endless contributions in the classroom soon secured him a position as an elementary school principal, where he would later advance his career to positions of Area Superintendent and Superintendent of Operations. After retirement Ken served as President of the Washoe County School District Board of Trustees. His legacy as an educator was highly respected across the community.

In addition to his professional successes, Ken could be found coaching at Hug High School and both Incline Middle and High Schools. Whether devoting his time to students, or embracing and supporting the successes of his wife, daughters' and granddaughters' futures, Ken was nothing short of an exemplary in all he did.

Living a balanced life, Ken stayed fit by lifting weights and enjoyed his time in Graeagle, California. He and his wife Eileen enjoyed country music, golfing and taking long walks, always accompanied by their dogs. Being a lover of the sun, they vacationed in Sunriver, Death Valley and Palm Springs. He was an avid sports fan and enjoyed cheering on his favorite teams, the University of Nevada (Wolf Pack) and University of Oregon (Ducks)!

Above all else, Ken's love for his family served as his greatest gift of all. He had a sparkle in his eye when he was with his family. The fundamentals of his legacy will be carried on by his wife Eileen Emerson-Grein of 48 years, daughters Krissy Grein-Brown, Stephanie Grein and granddaughters Kendall Brown and Kallista Brown. He is also survived by his loving lifelong family; sister in law Doranna Goodnight, brother in laws Jack Dessaints, Vern Emerson (Val), John Emerson, Jackie Emerson and numerous nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents Kenneth W Grein Sr. and Velma Jean Herring, his aunt and uncle James and Dorothy Hill, father and mother in law Ed and Mary Emerson, sister Beverly Dessaints and brother in law John Goodnight.

His life and legacy will be celebrated at a future date.

In Lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Northern Nevada Alzheimer's Association at Click on the purple DONATE button then donate to the Walk to End Alzheimer's (rather than to a team or individual). There is a box under Donor Recognition where gifts can be acknowledged in memory of someone. Gifts can also be mailed to the Alzheimer's Association Northern Nevada, 639 Isbell Rd, Ste 240, Reno, NV 89509.

To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published in the Reno Journal-Gazette and Mason Valley News from Nov. 19 to Nov. 22, 2020.
No memorial events are currently scheduled. To offer your sympathy during this difficult time, you can now have memorial trees planted in a National Forest in memory of your loved one.
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Memories & Condolences
Guest Book sponsored by Walton's Funerals & Cremations - Sierra Chapel
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9 entries
November 30, 2020
Mr. Grein was my 5th grade teacher at Kate Smith Elementary School in Sparks. He was the very best. He made learning so much fun. In class, we held an election for president and vice president and he taught us how to win and how to lose. He taught life lessons! He was good friends with Mr. Crow the 3rd grade teacher and they were so funny when they messed with us kids. Mr. Grein was my role model and I never, ever, forgot him. I wish I could of thanked him for being such an amazing teacher at such an important time in my life. My parents also loved Mr. Grein. I'm so sorry for your loss. I'll hold on to my memories of him forever. He was so kind and so caring. I remember him laughing pretty much all the time. I'm so sad to see that he passed. It hurts. I wish your whole family the very best. Thanks for sharing such an amazing teacher with me and my family! He was so awesome! RIP MR. GREIN!!!!!! You made this world a better place! THANK YOU!!!!!
Katie Wrenn
November 21, 2020
My thoughts and prayers go out to the family. I worked with Kenny when I worked in human resources. He was an exemplary individual. He always treated me with kindness.
Kathy L Hughes
November 21, 2020
Dear Eileen and family. We the retired staff at Pleasant Valley School where Kenny spent his first two years as principal are sending our regrets to his passing. We all had some good times & laughs together. He was always positive & helpful to our staff and children. He fit into our staff & was a quick learner to our sort of family ways. He will always be in our memories. Gloria Kelley, Retired secretary
Gloria Kelley
November 21, 2020
Dear Eileen, Stephanie and family. So sorry to hear the passing of your wonderful husband and father Kenny. He was such a wonderful man. May he rest in Peace. Love you all.
Mercedes Eizaguirre
November 21, 2020
So sorry for your loss, Steph. I will never forget the day at Fort Mason, when your Dad was already battling for his health. He hopped on that police horse after charming the cops with his life story. He made everyone’s day. What a symbol and memory.
Nate Chandler
November 21, 2020
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Nate Chandler
November 20, 2020
Dear Eileen and family. I am so sorry for the loss of Kenny. He was my first and longest supervisor as a principal. Kenny was a true advocate for children and families. Kenny’s guiding principle as an educator was always Kids First.
Neil H. Schott
Neil H Schott
November 20, 2020
Ken was one of my principals at Sierra Vista Elementary School a long long LONG time ago. He was always such fun and always so positive. He always had a smile on his face and something nice to say. I will remember him fondly, and so sorry to hear of his passing.
Cindy Hellmann
November 20, 2020
As a former member of the Washoe County School District Board of Trustees (1995-1998), I had the pleasure of meeting and working with Ken, when he served as a Area Superintendent. Ken was approachable, helpful, and grounded, which I appreciated.

I am saddened by Ken's passing. He never lost sight nor overlooked Washoe County students.
Dan Coppa
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