Kenneth Kroencke, 77, Hannibal, Mo., passed away at 8:35 p.m., Sunday, March 12, 2023, at his home after his long battle with cancer.
Kenneth was born July 6, 1945, in Hannibal, Mo. to Edward Kroencke and Lena Carpenter Kroencke. He was married to Margaret “Peggy” Jeffers on Oct. 12, 1963, at Mt. Olivet Methodist Church in Taylor, Mo. She survives.
Other survivors include his children, Kristine Krueger (Mitch), Williamstown, Mo.; and Mark Kroencke (Dawn), Bolingbrook, Ill.; his sister, Janice Johnson, Maywood, Mo.; sister-in-law and brother-in-law, Meri and Jerry Allen of Hannibal, Mo.; sister-in-law and brother-in-law, Lola and Ben Burk, Griffen, Ga.; granddaughter, Ashley Krueger, Williamstown; and several cousins, nieces, nephews, and great nieces and great-nephews.
Kenneth was preceded in death by his parents; stepmother, Lena Border Kroencke; two brothers, one brother in infancy, and brother, George Robert Kroencke; one sister-in-law, Judith Kroencke; and his father-in-law and mother-in-law, Glen and Melba Jeffers.
After graduating from Palmyra High School, Kenneth served four years active duty with the United States Marine Corps, spending time in California, North Carolina and Okinawa. Kenneth was honorably discharged with the rank of Sergeant E-5.
Kenneth belonged to the Boots-Dickson American Legion Post #174 in Palmyra, and was a member of the post’s Honor Guard. He was privileged to go on the 60th Great River Honor Flight to Washington, D.C. in August 2022.
Professionally, Kenneth worked as a telephone installer/repairman and later as a central office equipment man. He retired from CenturyLink after 32 years of service with phone companies.
In retirement, he attended Vatterott College and received a degree in electrical mechanics. He later became a licensed electrician. He held many part-time jobs in retirement but the one he enjoyed the most was with CF Industries as a safety guard, where he worked 13 years.
Kenneth enjoyed volunteer work within the community and received the Volunteer of the Year award from the Palmyra Chamber of Commerce in 2017. He was trained in disaster relief through the Missouri Baptist Convention and went on several trips to other states to help those affected by disasters.
In 2018, he and his wife joined Missouri Campers on Mission (C.O.M.), which is a chapter of the National Christian Organization. Since that time, he had the opportunity to work along with other campers volunteering their time, talents and skills to help churches, camps and other Christian entities with various projects. He often said he felt like his calling was working with C.O.M.
Kenneth followed sports and enjoyed watching Mizzou basketball and football, the St. Louis Cardinals and the Kansas City Chiefs.
What brought him the most happiness though, was spending time and taking trips with his family and special pets he had throughout the years.
Kenneth was a longtime member of Immanuel Baptist Church in Hannibal where he worked and served faithfully in many areas for 34 years. He had a special bond with his church family; but more importantly, he loved Jesus Christ, his Lord and Savior, who he abides with now.
Funeral services will be at 11 a.m., Friday, March 17, at Immanuel Baptist Church in Hannibal. Pastor Anthony Schindler and Pastor Mark Albee will officiate.
Graveside services and burial with full military honors by the Boots-Dickson American Legion Post #174 will be at 2 p.m., Friday at Greenwood Cemetery in Palmyra.
Pallbearers will be Daniel Gibbons, Nathan Gibbons, Rich Gibson, Jeff Heibel, John Hjelm and Mike Newbrough..
Honorary pallbearers will be Bob Cook, Danny Gibbons, Bill Heibel, Shelby Pugh, Ed Tamerius and Larry Voepel.
Friends and family are invited to Kenneth’s Life Celebration at a visitation that will be from 10 a.m. until the time of service, Friday, at the church.
Memorials may be made to Immanuel Baptist Church or Community Loving Care Hospice.
Online condolences may be shared and video tribute may be viewed at www.JamesODonnellFuneralHome.com.