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Welcome to the memorial page for

Ken Slattery

June 11, 2017

 

Ken Slattery, a life long resident of Greenfield, born September 19, 1945, passed away on June 11, 2017, after a period of declining health.

His parents were Dennis and Elsie Slattery.

 

Ken grew up enjoying lots of time spent at the Y and Camp Apex, where he was a champion ping-pong player, lifeguard, and camp counselor. 

 

Highland Park was his backyard, where his love of nature grew at an early age and lasted throughout his life. He was a keen observer, always able to notice and appreciate even nature’s tiniest treasures.

 

Ken graduated from Greenfield High School in 1963 and continued his education at UMASS, receiving a Master’s Degree in Plant Biochemistry. He decided to enter the field of education and in 1970 began what became a 34-year career at Turners Falls High School.  During that time, Ken taught all aspects of science and was Chairman of the Science Department throughout most of his career. 

 

He particularly enjoyed teaching chemistry and physics.  He possessed a sharp, analytical mind, but more importantly, Ken had the gift of helping kids grasp even the most challenging of subjects.  He’s remembered as being firm, and fair, but also fun, using his trademark sense of humor and sharp wit to liven all his classes.  Throughout his career, Ken received numerous excellence in teaching awards, including being twice selected as TFHS Teacher of the Year and also received multiple listings in Who’s Who of American Teachers.   But, what was most meaningful to Ken was how his students often returned after graduating to thank “Slats” for how much he helped to prepare them for life after high school, college, and beyond.

 

Upon retiring in 2004, Ken devoted much of his time to his passion for plants.  He and his wife Linda enjoyed their time as vendors for several years at the Greenfield Farmers’ Market.  Many folks in Franklin County and beyond have some of the many varieties of hostas that Ken propagated in his ever-expanding backyard gardens. Ken was also a member of the Franklin County Agricultural Society, and especially had fun volunteering at Fair time. He enjoyed his time as a worker volunteer at Greenfield’s Market, too.  He also enjoyed volunteering his time in community projects like the Free Harvest Supper, the Green River Music Festival, and before his health challenges slowed him down, Ken could often be found working in the gardens at the Energy Park, either during the outdoor COOP Concerts he liked so much, or just on a day by himself.

 

He and Linda also got to spend many warm winters in their little piece of island paradise in Antigua, where they made many wonderful friends and memories for over 20 years.

 

For as much as Ken loved the warmth of a sunny island day, or digging in his gardens, he loved his cats even more.  Ken had a real affinity for animals and easily earned their friendship, trust and love.  He always considered his pets as part of his family.  His kitties will miss his affection and attention.

 

Ken leaves other family members and friends who’ll miss him dearly as well:  Linda, his wife of 38 years, his daughters Jennifer and Colleen, and her future husband, Jasper and his son, Jake, his cousins Dave and Sammie, and his granddaughter, Gigi, whom he considered the smartest, most talented girl in the whole world.  He especially loved that she has a great sense of humor, much like her “Kiki.”

 

According to Ken’s wishes, there will be no calling hours or services in his memory. Perhaps honor his memory by making a donation to an animal or nature organization of your choice or to Hospice of Franklin County.  Or, perhaps you might remember how well he taught you something… whether it was how to solve a chemistry equation or grow tomatoes. But, most of all, to everyone who knew and loved Ken, remember how well and often he made you laugh. 

 

Arrangements are under the direction of the Kostanski Funeral Home.  Sympathy message available at www.kostanskifuneralhome.com. 


 Service Information

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