Kenneth A. Carpenter, 77, of South Bend, died on Monday, May 2, 2022, at Memorial Hospital following a brief illness. Ken was born on Oct. 2, 1944, to the late Richard Lowell Carpenter and Lela Ruth (Lamphere) Carpenter in Plainwell, Michigan. Ken attended Plainwell High School and graduated in 1963. In 1965 Ken received a degree from Ferris State College in architectural drafting. Ken served in the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War and was stationed at Camp Ethan Allen in South Korea during his service. He received an honorable discharge in 1972.
On January 16, 1971, in South Bend, Ken was united in marriage to Linda F. Wharton, who preceded him in death. Ken is survived by two daughters: Jennifer and her husband David Mannen of South Bend, and Rebekah Carpenter and her husband Brad Lile of South Bend. He is also survived by one grandson, Kenneth Lile. Also surviving are his brother Bill (Michele) Carpenter of Michigan, and numerous nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by brother Richard Lowell Carpenter, Jr. of Idaho, and sister Phyllis Bierema of Michigan.
Ken spent most of his working life in the Michiana area, designing and building commercial properties throughout the region. He was an active member of the Builders Association of Elkhart County for many years. In the mid-1990s Ken rekindled his love of British cars when he purchased his beloved Triumph TR6, Emily. Ken and Linda spent many years as members of the Michiana Brits Car Club and took Emily to shows across the region. After retiring, Ken did some consulting but spent most of his time caring for Linda as her health declined.
Per Ken’s wishes he has been cremated and there will be no visitation or service at this time. There will be a private graveside service in the spring of 2022 at Gun Plain Township Cemetery, Plainwell, MI. Arrangements have been handled by Palmer Funeral Homes – Welsheimer Chapel and Southlawn Cremation Services. In lieu of flowers or monetary donations, consider doing something nice for someone. Online condolences may be left for the family at www.palmerfuneralhomes.com
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