Farewell my friend
By PJ Martin
This past week the folks at the Herald-News suffered a great loss when columnist Wendall Kennison passed away. Not only was Wendall a columnist, but a good friend to me and many others.
I will remember Wendall for his kindness, his jokes, his stories, and his friendship. Over the years he was involved in several community groups in Summer Shade took part in many school events and fundraisers. He was even elected honorary Mayor of Summer Shade at Founders Day.
In years past, Wendell performed in many of Barn Lot Theater’s plays, usually as the bumbling comical character and he loved it. He talked quite a bit about the plays and how much fun they were.
He also performed on stage with Lonzo and Oscar at the Singing Hills Campgrounds in the late 70s and 80s. Again, performing a comedy act to make people laugh and have fun. He was an avid photographer and could be seen with a camera in hand and took many photos for the newspaper over the years.
He always seemed to want to make people laugh. If you have read any of his columns, you most likely got a good chuckle out of them. (Perhaps that’s why he named it Smiles.) The exploits of Phil T. McNasty, Crud Crawley, Rancid Rashbottom, Reverend Deuteronomy Doolittle, and the forever-pickled Uncle Sot have entertained readers for several years with their back woods-style humor.
Unless you knew him well, you didn’t know that Wendell spent time in the United States Air Force’s 9218th Air Recovery Squadron as an Airman Second Class who carried out maintenance on the planes and was also a member of the Air National Guard.
Wendall was a member of the Kilwinning Lodge # 506 Masonic Lodge in Louisville and rose to the rank of Master Mason.
He didn’t talk about those things much, but chose instead to talk about his family. He loved his family and cared lovingly for his sweet wife Lois when she became ill. He and Lois were married for over 60 years and raised five children together. And together they suffered the devastating loss of not one child, but two.
Wendell and Lois leave three sons, eight grandchildren, fourteen great-grandchildren, and one great-great-grandchild to carry on their memory.
2 Timothy 4:7, “I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith”