Kenneth John Ward, 61, of Suffern, NY passed away suddenly on Wednesday, January 27. Born on August 16, 1959 in Morristown, NJ, he was the son of the late John Bernard and Jeanne Jochima (VanMoerkerken) Ward.
Ken is survived by sisters Patricia McArdle and husband Patrick of Parksley, VA, and Susan Hasenbein of Waldwick, NJ; nieces Kimberly Epstein and husband Larry of Kinnelon, NJ, and Lori Suero and husband Jarlen of Hollywood, FL.; grand-nieces Phoebe and Olivia Epstein and grand-nephew Jay Suero. He was predeceased by his brother-in-law Richard Hasenbein.
Ken was passionate about his love for his family and friends. His friends were his friends for life. Life was meant to be lived and he lived his life the way he chose to – with weekly Friday gatherings at his home, routine coffee Sunday mornings with family and friends, 3 o’clock phone calls with his aging friend Kiet Huynh, deep sea fishing trips, celebrations of life events – he was there for everyone. He was the guy to go to if you needed work done at your house; painting, mixing concrete, building decks, usually with his best friend Tommy Fallon by his side. All the while he would be busting the chops of his inept friends, with a quick wit and amazing sense of humor.
Ken’s professional career was spent entirely with Ciba Geigy/Novartis in Suffern, NY, retiring as a Senior Scientist in 2016. Some of the teams he worked on as a Quality Control Chemist/Analyst included Raw Materials, Estraderm and Finished Products/Stability. The final finished product team he worked on was the Diovan/Cardiovascular team where he mastered the technique of Thin Layer Chromatography. He was a member of the Safety Committee and the Haz-Mat team and enjoyed demonstrating to “bring your child to work day” children how to rappel from the roof of the main building; something he did as a member of the High Angle/Confined space rescue team.
He was a precise and meticulous worker, known as Mr. Fix-It when it came to equipment and devices that needed repair in the lab. He made his coworkers laugh and smile with his light-hearted pranks or changing up the lyrics to a Johnny Cash song to sing about a colleague or work situation. Highly regarded for his intelligence by his coworkers, a peer on his performance review stated “Ken has evolved into the TLC guru of the team.”
His word was his promise and he never broke his promises. He loved his “part-time job at the casino”, he was a strength to lean on, a sound advice giver and a person of deep spiritual faith. He believed this life was “college for the soul.” He has graduated with honors.
Memorial visitation will be held on Saturday, February 13, 2021 from 10 AM - 12 PM with a private family service beginning at 12 PM at Van Emburgh-Sneider-Pernice Funeral Home, 109 Darlington Ave, Ramsey, NJ. (the memorial service will be live streamed) Please click here to watch the service.
The family requests memorials for a charity of your choice or the Paralyzed Veterans of America, 801 18th Street NW, Washington, DC 20006-3517, www.pva.org.
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Paralyzed Veterans of America
801 18th Street NW, Washington DC 20006-3517