JEFFERSON — Kenneth L. Sweet, age 66, devoted husband, father and grandfather, passed away Sunday afternoon, April 28, 2013, at his residence after an extended battle with ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease).
He was born Feb. 21, 1947, in Ashtabula, to Raymond A. and Marjorie L. (Ray) Sweet and had lived in Jefferson for the majority of his life. He graduated from Jefferson High School in 1966 and enrolled in the U.S. Air Force serving during the Vietnam War. While stationed at McConnell Air Force Base in Wichita, Kan., Ken met and married Nancy L. Kraft on July 19, 1969.
Ken served 29 years on the Ashtabula City Fire Department as Engineer, EMT, HAZMAT unit member and head of the Toys for Tots program until retiring in 2006. He was a licensed real estate agent and in retirement was a driver/assistant at Fleming & Billman Funeral Homes.
Ken was loved by all who knew him and will be fondly remembered for his social demeanor, genuineness and philanthropy. He was a member of Ashtabula Firefighters Local #165 and the Jefferson Chamber of Commerce where he was active in the flag project, Manna Food Drive, golf outing, scholarship committee and the Easter Egg Hunt. He was a former member of the Harbor Yacht Club and coached JAGS and Little League while his children were growing up. He and Nancy supported and volunteered for Parents & Children Fighting Cancer and The Fisher House becoming involved in memory of their daughter-in-law, Jessica.
He was constantly active and enjoyed traveling, boating, motorcycling, golf, woodworking, good friends and good times.
Ken is survived by his wife of 43 years, Nancy L. (Kraft) Sweet; daughter, Kimberly A. (Michael R. III) Beck of Akron; son, Christopher M. (Danielle R.) Sweet; and five grandchildren, Anthony, Katelyn, Ashelyn, Gabby and Ray, all of Bowie, Md. He will be sadly missed by many cousins and extended family members.
He was preceded in death by his father, Raymond in 2000; mother, Marjorie in 2010; and beloved daughter-in-law, Jessica in 2009.
Friends may call at the Jefferson Home of FLEMING & BILLMAN FUNERAL DIRECTORS, 49 W. Jefferson St., Jefferson, Wednesday, from 4 to 7 p.m., with Ashtabula Firefighters Local #165 standing Honor Guard. Geneva Post #6846 will provide Military Honors at 7 p.m.. to conclude Services. Nancy, Kim & Chris would like to extend an invitation to family and friends to a Celebration Gathering at the residence following calling hours.
The family requests that memorials be made in Ken’s name to the LOVESWEET Memorial Fund, 13100 Filly Lane, Truckee, CA 96161 or at www.LOVESWEET.org
The family also expresses immense gratitude to his physicians, nurses and caretakers, Dept. of Veterans Affairs, Hospice of the Western Reserve and the Northern Ohio ALS Association.
Guest book and obituary at fleming-billman.com and starbeacon.com.