Kenneth E. VanDyke
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Kenneth E. Van Dyke

Kenneth passed peacefully in his sleep on the morning of February 4th, 2020. Born in Olympia, the son to Edward August Van Dyke and Adeline Genevieve Van Dyke, Ken was surrounded by family as he succumbed to a 3-year battle with cancer.

Devoted to his faith and unwavering desire to be in the service of others, Ken spent eleven years at St. Edward's Seminary before pursuing a life in education leading to a long forty year career at Lakeside School.

Endearingly known by his students as KVD. Ken's passion for enriching the lives of those around him was boundless, while his ceaseless fascination with words always left you with an alluring desire to know more.

Whether challenging his Latin students with lines from Cicero, sailing the Aegean, or translating the scriptures at St Peters, Ken was a lifelong learner, traveler, and lover of the classics.

Much of Ken's adult life continued to reflect his vast appreciation for the arts. He was continuously involved in the Seattle Opera, an avid patron of the Pacific NW Ballet, and a longtime member of Seattle Men's Chorus.

Ken is survived by his son, Donald Van Dyke and his wife, Jenn Van Dyke, grandson, Diedric. Ken's siblings: Sister Charlotte Van Dyke, Mary Gulla and husband, Joe Gulla, Barbara Van Dyke Shuman and husband, Jim Shuman, Ann Strandberg and husband, Lars Strandberg; nieces and nephews Brandon and Teodora Rutar Shuman, Jeremy Shuman and Yumi Okubo Shuman, Melissa Gosland, Vanessa Gulla and Ian Baldwin, Michael Gulla and Stephanie Chen-Gulla, Lara Strandberg Wilcox and John Wilcox, Erika Strandberg and Brian Maples, and many grand-nieces and nephews.

All of whom will miss Ken's sense of humor, creative cooking, and extraordinary capacity to support and guide those in need.

A Funeral Mass will be held on Saturday, February 15th at 2:00pm at St. James Cathedral

804 9th Ave, Seattle, 98104

Guestbook at

Hoffner Fisher & Harvey

To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published in The Seattle Times on Feb. 9, 2020.
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4 entries
February 15, 2020
I knew Ken from a couple of different groups we were in together, and his wit and intelligence always shone through. Such a sweet man, and I'll miss him dearly.
Tim Clements-Levin
February 14, 2020
KVD and me at high school graduation
I loved this man. Loved him. He was the best teacher ever. He made time for me. Latin class was more like hanging out with a wise mentor than a class. More than 20 years after high school has ended, I still think of him often. I love him and will miss him dearly. I often tell my students, whether they are 12 or 22, "NO DISCLAIMERS!" And every time, I credit my wise Latin teacher. It's the best advice anyone has ever given me, and I've tried to pass it along to everyone I know, as it turns out it's advice most of us need. I do my best to emulate his example in my own career in education. The world lost a bright light.
Wendy Lawrence
February 11, 2020
Ken sang with me in the Seattle Mens Chorus and was kind enough to offer me a room in his home when I began graduate school at the U.W., after leaving Seattle to start at Indiana U, and deciding to return. He took me sailing several times after we first met on an airplane flight in 1989. And when I ran into him with a bouquet of flowers under my arm on Nov 4, 1989, in front of the soon-to-be Jack's Bistro on 15th, he told me that because of our happy encounter that sunny morning, he was going to name his bistro after me. Kind man, father figure, mentor. Rest in peace.
Jack Hilovsky
February 9, 2020
Ken was the senior class advisor at Nathan Hale High School where he also taught Latin. As the class president, Ken provided me empowering guidance in the organization and encouragement for our class activities. I recall our group of officers and committee chairs as an energetic bunch and Ken was a constant, positive and available type of advisor. A compliment to him, decades later, was a noticeable contingent of my classmates (and I) were eager for Ken to attend our 50th high school reunion which occurred a few years ago. I had several pleasant, catch-up conversations with him as we explored the possibility of him attending, but he was unable to do so. During those recent chats, he was as engaged, respectful and kindhearted as he was in those mid-1960s high school times. Ken is someone who has a positive impact on your life.
Dick Callahan, NHHS, Class of 1966
Dick Callahan
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