Kenneth Howard Killion

01/15/1950 - 04/08/2020

Obituary for Kenneth Howard Killion

Kenneth (Ken) Howard Killion died at his home in St. Louis from esophageal cancer on April 8, 2020.

Ken was born in Washington, DC, on January 15, 1950, to Richard Harvey Killion and Doris Elizabeth (Palmer) Killion. He grew up in the Baltimore area and graduated from Towson University in Maryland. He married Jeanne Dorsty in 1972 and had a daughter, Kathryn Palmer. He subsequently married Mary Roberts on December 1, 1990, and they had two sons, Louis Peter and James Michael.

He began his career in advertising but quickly found his way to medical publishing. He spent 45 years working to improve the quality and availability of medical information. He began working for Williams & Wilkins in Baltimore and then went to Aspen Publishers in Rockville, Maryland, and Mosby-Yearbook in Chicago. In 1999, he started his own business, Thomas Land Publishers, Inc.

Outside of work, Ken was an avid guitar player, beginning with a Baltimore “garage band” called Froggy and the Gremlins. Music was his passion, and he was happiest with a guitar in his hand and an amplifier by his side. He loved to teach and mentor other musicians.

One of his greatest joys in life was being a father, and he was extremely proud of his children. He also loved being in nature. He valued his early experiences with the Sea Scouts and was an amateur astronomer and bird watcher.

He is survived by his wife of 30 years and his three children. He is also survived by his mother and his brothers, William (Bill) Killion (Georgene) and Richard (Rick) Killion (Trudi), and four grandchildren. He was predeceased by his father.

Donations to the St. Louis Youth Symphony or to Shaw Nature Reserve are requested in lieu of flowers.

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Ken's calm enthusiasm and optimism will endure in our memory. His beautiful relationship with Mary was inspiring. Ken will always be remembered in our book club for his love of books about the wonders in nature. Ken's presence was a gift and his spirit lives on in everyone fortunate enough to know him. He was quite simply one of the best men we have ever known.
- Bob Richardson

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