Kenneth G. Crump, of South Abington Township, passed away peacefully May 6, 2013 in the Moses Taylor Hospital in Scranton after a brief illness. His wife of nearly 64 years is Jean C. (Lewis) Crump; they were married in 1949.
He was born 1920 in Scranton, the son of the late George W. and Lulu H. (Kellow) Crump. He grew up on the West Mountain, was an active member of the Boy Scouts, and participated in the first Boy Scout Jamboree in Washington, DC. He graduated from Technical High School in Scranton, the Philco Technical School in Philadelphia, and attended the Penn State Extension. He served in the Army Signal Corp. during WWII in the Pacific Theater, landing in Japan with the occupation forces.
He was a loving husband and father. He possessed a witty sense of humor, and delighted in the sound of laughter. He enjoyed the out-of-doors, working the land, hunting and golfing. He also enjoyed dancing, and spending time with friends and family.
After returning from the war, he was employed by the John T. Porter Co. in Scranton. Afterward, he worked many years for Loral (previously known as Weston), and retired in 1985. During his retirement, he enjoyed his many pastimes. He was a long-time member of Clarks Green United Methodist Church.
They are the parents of three children: George W., Willow Grove, PA; Kenneth R., York, PA; and Carolyn J., Winston-Salem, NC. Also surviving is a sister, Patricia, and her husband the Rev. Richard W. Russell, of South Abington Township, four grandchildren, two great-grandchildren, two step great-grandchildren, one step great-great granddaughter, nieces and nephews, and many loving cousins.
He was predeceased by two sisters, Marjorie Swan of Hollywood FL, Romayne E. of Dunmore, and a brother, Donald W. of Miami, FL
A funeral service will be held Friday at 11am from the Clarks Green united Methodist Church, 119 Glenburn Rd, Clarks Green, 18411, with services by Rev. Brent Stouffer, Pastor. Interment will follow in Clarks Green Cemetery. Friends may call Thursday from 6 to 8pm at the Lawrence E. Young Funeral lHome, 418 S. State St. Clarks Summit Pa. 18411, and on Friday at 10am until time of service at the church.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Clarks Green United Methodist Church, 119 Glenburn Road, 18411.
Eulogy for Kenneth G. Crump
May 10, 2013
We are here today not just to mourn the loss of our dad, but to celebrate and honor his life. I’d like to share some of my thoughts and favorite memories with you. How much time do you have? OK—I’ll try to be brief, but to me, there’s a lot to say about him; he lived a full life of nearly 93 years.
He was a heck of a guy, wasn’t he? He was a good man, one of the very best; a loving and devoted husband, father and family man. He was a handsome fella, too, with wavy hair, sparkling blue eyes, a great smile, and oh, those dimples! He could be quite charming and a bit of a flirt at times, and made many a girl swoon, I think. But he really only ever had eyes for our mom, Jean. They were each other’s rock.
We all loved his quick wit and sense of humor, didn’t we? He was always making us smile and laugh with his little dancing jigs, his songs, and his little ditties. “A chick in the car, and the car won’t go, that’s the way you spell Chicago.” “A knife, a fork, a bottle and a cork, that’s the way you spell New York.” And so on. He could always be counted on to add some levity to any situation. He was making us laugh right up to the end. I’m told he was joking with his nurses just moments before his passing. If he could be here now (and he probably is looking down on us), he’d be cracking jokes, with a twinkle in his eyes, and a devilish grin, laughing, tears rolling down his cheeks, as they often did when he laughed.
There are, sadly, many things I don’t know about our dad, and guess I never will. Too many unanswered and unasked questions. At times when I did ask questions, he’d say, “Why do you want to know about that?” He was not one to toot his own horn or wax on about the past. A humble man. He was a man of actions more than a man of words. He demonstrated his love for us by working hard to provide for our family, to care for us, to be there. He was always willing to lend a hand, whether it was to change a diaper, get up with my colicky brother Ken, press an evening gown for me, look after his sister Romayne, chauffer around my cousin Liz or my niece Sara, or many other ways too numerous to cite here, he did it. He did so much for so many. I’m sure most of you can think of a few ways he lent you a hand.
He cooked, he cleaned, did laundry, ironed. He fixed things: his tractor, the washing machine, jewelry, cars. He installed electrical outlets; taught me how to swim and how to drive, the difference between a straight-edge and Philips-head screwdriver, and how to set up a circuit board. He was a handy guy to have around.
He loved being outside. He told me stories about roaming the woods and finding beehives for his grandfather’s apiary. Maybe, that’s how he developed an allergy to bees??? He enjoyed skiing with his siblings down the mountain through the woods on these skinny wooden skis that you just strapped on your shoes, then hiking back up the mountain and doing it again. I believe it was on that same mountain one winter, many years later, that he came running after me and rescued me from going over the edge in my silver aluminum saucer. Always my hero.
He liked camping and was active in the Boy Scouts; he attended the first National Boy Scout Jamboree in Washington, DC, in 1937. When his grandfather donated land to the Boy Scouts, he helped to clear it, operating some sort of backhoe at the ripe age of 11. He told me the older scouts were suitably impressed, and he earned their respect that day.
He was athletic, although he preferred rabbit-hunting to playing football in high school. He did compete in swimming events and speed skating while in the Boy Scouts.
He was a farmer at heart, and loved tending to our seven acres of land, growing vegetables (the Best sweet corn), mowing grass, and raking leaves. I think he was happiest on his tractor. He helped my brother George with his chicken enterprise, and Ken with his rabbit-raising. He raised turkeys, too, -- no not just my brothers and me, but actual turkeys. He had a turkey farm. That was before the war.
He proudly served his country for four years in the Army Signal Corps during WWII in the Pacific Theater, and landed in Japan with the occupation forces. He was a big, strong guy and earned the nickname “Bull” in the service. Although, that may have been partly due to his stubbornness. That same stubbornness served him well in later years. After the war he worked for the John T. Porter Co. as a salesman, and slung around big 100 lb. sacks of flour.
He really was a kind of Renaissance man with his diverse interests and talents. He liked to cook. One time as a teen, when his sisters and mother had gone shopping, he decided he wanted an apple pie. So, he figured out how to do it, and baked an apple pie! He cooked many a Sunday dinner for us, and most family Christmas dinners (our favorite—turkey, with stuffing). I used to like to watch him make the stuffing. After he retired, he became our mom’s chief cook and bottle-washer.
He dabbled in photography and developed pictures in a dark room he had set up in our basement. He liked playing cards, and he and his friend Frank Ryczak enjoyed beating – I mean playing – Pinochle with my mom and Frank’s wife, Mary.
He was at one time a member of the Keystone Citizens’ Band Radio Club, and we drove around with a CB radio in the car. He liked to know what was going on, perusing the daily newspaper, and watching the news several times a day. At one time, much to our dismay, he had a scanner set up in our living room to listen to the local police and fire department calls. But, in just one of his many selfless acts, he put aside his own interests to preserve domestic tranquility, and moved the scanner upstairs.
After retiring from Weston, where he worked for many years as an electronic technician, he took up golf and ballroom dancing. (Dancing With the Stars missed a good one!) He and our mom had many good times with the Big Band Society and their dances, and traveling to Tennessee with Frank and Mary to play golf.
He liked to watch the birds and we have several make-shift bird feeders he built in our yard. I think he finally gave up fighting the squirrels. They always won.
He didn’t have it easy. He had his first heart attack just as he turned the age of 48, and another one six years later. He lived with angina for many years, and had a triple by-pass at the start of 1991. But, with his stubbornness, stoicism, determination, and the strength and love of our mom, he pushed through all his heart problems, various and sundry other surgeries, terrible osteoarthritis in his knees, and recently back pain due to a compression fracture in his spine. He rarely complained of pain. If he did, you knew it was bad. He did sometimes complain about taking his medications, his insulin shots, going to doctor appointments or to the hospital saying he didn’t need any of it. “Those doctors don’t know what they’re doing, they’re just practicing. I’ll wait ‘til they know what they’re doing!”
But he did it. He took his medications, his insulin, and went to his doctor appointments. And I know he did it for us, for our mom, because we needed him and wanted him around. But despite his recent valiant efforts, his 92-year-old body would no longer cooperate, and he knew it was time to let go.
We know that if there was any way he could have stayed, he would have, and remained with our mom. I will miss him more than words could ever say. We all will. But I know he will always be with me, with our mom and my brothers, and with everyone who knew and loved him. His spirit, his humor lives on in us, and we will do our best to emulate him.
He’s in a better place now. We’ll see him again sometime, and find out what new witticisms he’s already at work cooking up! And he’ll make us smile, as he always did.
Carolyn J Crump
May 10, 2013