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Wednesday, April 11th, 2018
Rev. Kenneth Kuenning
Rev. Kenneth D. Kuenning, 87, died April 5, 2018 at his home in Moline, IL surrounded by his family after a brief illness.
He was Pastor Emeritus of the Church of Peace United Church of Christ in Rock Island, IL which he served from l969 to 1995.
He was a graduate of Memorial High School in St. Marys, Ohio, Mission House College, (Lakeland University), in Plymouth, Wisconsin, and Eden Theological Seminary in Webster Groves, Missouri. He was ordained into the Christian Ministry in June 1956 in his home church, St. Paul's Evangelical and Reformed Church in St. Marys.
He was an intern at Morningside Community Church, Inglewood, CA and served pastorates at First Reformed Church, Rising Sun, IN,'56-'59, St. Paul Church, Staunton, IL, '59-'65, and Boonville, MO, '65-'69, prior to moving to the Quad Cities.
In 1957, Ken was a delegate to the Uniting General Synod of the United Church of Christ, merging the Evangelical and Reformed Church and the Congregational and Christian Churches, in Cleveland, OH. In the early 1960s he accompanied the last load of cattle to post-war Germany for Heifer Project International.
During his ministry in Rock Island, he founded the Community Caring Conference in l976, an independent self-help block club organization which helps neighbors get to know one another and unite in addressing mutual neighborhood and community concerns to improve the quality of life within the areas in which they live.
In the l980s, he provided leadership and support in launching the Quad Cities Interfaith, an organization comprised of persons from Protestant, Roman Catholic, and Jewish faith communities from Iowa and Illinois which continues to work together on community issues.
During his years in ministry he served on various association committees: Church and Ministry, Stewardship and Evangelism in the Illinois Conference, served as a camp counselor, and took youth groups to Estes Park, YMCA of the Rockies, the United Nations in New York, visited representatives in Washington, and work camps in Back Bay Mission. He also participated in a march with Martin Luther King, Jr. in Chicago; he supported and firmly believed in civil rights.
He and his wife, Delores (Dee) enjoyed camping across this country with their children during their growing-up years, and led trips to the Holy Land in the l980s. He loved his family and the Church with his whole heart. He and Dee enjoyed 63 years of marriage.
Their children are Laurie Albright, Manchester, MO; Annette Hong (Peter) Ankeny IA; Mary Gross (Rev. Robert) Waukesha WI; and Paul Kuenning (Charlotte), Whitewater WI. His grandchildren are: David (Maria) Hong and son Ian, Woodbridge, VA; Kristina Grier (Travis), Hillsboro OR; Deanna (Corey) Wright, Green Bay WI; Emily Kuenning, Green Bay WI; Sarah Gross and Daniel Gross, Waukesha WI. He is further survived by his brother, Ed Kuenning (Wilma); nieces, Druann (Gary) Whitaker, and Kimberly (Rick) Werling, and nephew, Mark (Beverly) Kuenning, of Celina, OH; his sister-in-law, Dixie, and nephew, Travis (Chris) Kuenning, of St. Marys, OH; and cousins Bill (Karen) Bloomhorst and Dale Speckman.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Wilbur and Ada Kuenning and brother Jack Kuenning of St. Marys.
The family requests that memorials be made to the Church of Peace UCC Sustaining Fund.
Viewing will be Friday, April 13 from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. at Wheelan-Pressly Funeral Home, 3030 7th Ave., Rock Island.
A funeral will be officiated by the Rev. Mariah Marlin-Warfield on Saturday, April 14, 10:00 a.m. at Church of Peace, 1114 12th St., Rock Island.
Online condolences may be left at wheelanpressly.com.
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