OBITUARIO

Kenneth Glen Gillis

28 marzo , 193920 febrero , 2021

Kenneth Glen Gillis, 81, passed away Saturday morning, February 20, 2021.

Born March 28, 1939 at Fort Bragg, NC, he was a son of the late Glen and Thelma Jones Gillis.

Ken graduated from Lawton High School in Lawton, Oklahoma in 1957. Active in the Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC), he received a citation for outstanding cadet during a summer training program. He started his higher education at Cameron College in Lawton in 1957. That educational pursuit was interrupted following a back injury requiring surgery to repair damaged discs. The injury also ended his ROTC activities.

Upon his father’s retirement from the US Army in March 1958, the family moved to Raleigh, NC where Ken enrolled at North Carolina State College (now NCSU) and graduated in June 1963 with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Civil Engineering.

To pay his way through college, Ken worked with encyclopedia companies to place volumes of their books in people’s homes. He was a crew leader and guided sales operations in various cities over several summers and falls. After graduating from NCSU in 1963, he started work with the City of Charlotte in its Engineering Department and soon became a Registered Professional Engineer in North Carolina. He rose to the position of Assistant City Engineer, supervising a large staff responsible for designing and managing the construction of roadway improvement projects, drainage structures, and municipal buildings. His employees also oversaw the design of and implementation of landscape improvement projects. Ken retired from the Engineering Department in 1997. He worked for the Federal Emergency Management Agency and later processed storm damage claims made through insurance companies.

Ken volunteered with Sharon United Methodist Church (now SouthPark Church) helping with projects sponsored by the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR). He assisted with a building project in Puerto Rico and a storm damage rehabilitation project in Louisiana. His volunteering service continued with Habitat for Humanity (Habitat Charlotte) laying out floor and wall plates for house construction, constructing porch railings, and building utility sheds.

Ken was an avid hunter, enjoying trips with friends to hunt White Tail Deer in eastern North Carolina and Ring-Necked Pheasant in the Midwest. He enjoyed traveling with family members and cousins and arranged trips to Alaska, Hawaii, Beijing, Oklahoma, New England and California. He enjoyed his friends and sponsored regular gatherings to socialize. He enjoyed family reunions. Survivors include his two children, Michael Gillis (Wyndy) and Dianna Gillis Lamb; his four siblings, Linda Averette (James), Dan Gillis (Barbara), Doug Gillis (Marsha) and Earl Gillis (Karen); and two grandchildren, Brittany Gillis and Joshua Lamb.

Virtual funeral services are planned for 11:00 am Thursday, March 4, 2021.

Flowers are welcome or contributions may be made to Habitat For Humanity.

Please join the live stream & share condolences online at www.wilsonfuneralservices.com.

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Kenneth Glen Gillis

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Bill Dobbeck

4 marzo , 2021

Although I hadn't seen him since I retired in 2014, I got to know Ken in short increments over the years as his mailman. He was kind,
generous and I always enjoyed talking and joking with him.
I am truly sorry he is no longer with us.

Bill Dobbeck

Karen Hamilton

4 marzo , 2021

A good friend for many, many years. Ken and Laraine and Charlie and I with our families had many wonderful times together. Things changed but Ken still remained a wonderful friend. Good bye dear friend and God bless you!

Tim Chambers

3 marzo , 2021

I was fortunate to work with Ken Gillis as a member of the "Thursday Wallace Hall Crew" for Habitat for Humanity from Sharon United Methodist Church (now Southpark Church). This crew laid out new home floor patterns and built sill plates for internal/external walls.
Ken proved to be a good worker, team member and provided and maintained tools for our collective benefit. We all benefited from his talents, efforts and found him fun to work with.

I will always remember the times we worked together fondly.

Michael Craig

28 febrero , 2021

No one did more to encourage my career in civil engineering. Ken hired me in 1970 as a 19 year old out of work kid with some math skills, a little drafting education and a pilots license. I think it was actually the pilots license that got the job as a draftsman. He pushed me to go to class at night and get an engineering degree at UNCC. He seemed genuinely proud to sign as a reference for my application to become a professional engineer. I was fortunate to be one of Ken's human projects. He was a tough boss and very intense about each of his team doing their best.

Maybe my happiest memory of Ken was at my going away luncheon at the Open Kitchen when Ken stood and gave me a glowing send off for my new job in Florida. Now I saw him more as the caring big brother who was happy with kicking me out of the nest.

One of my funniest memories with Ken was while I was taking an elective abnormal psychology course and documenting minor "abnormal" observations about actions of folks around me for the class. That made Ken sorta paranoid and he stormed out of my office one day shouting he wasn't going to work with me anymore until I finished that damn class.

Ken you were a good man who made a big difference in your community and with your friends and coworkers.
Mike Craig

Doug Gillis

27 febrero , 2021

On a trip to Beijing, Ken met a group of students attending the Agricultural University. Before leaving to return home, he helped sponsor a meal at a restaurant near the university.

Doug Gillis

27 febrero , 2021

Ken delivered a piece of frozen lightening (a fulgurite) to Dan Ramos, a Tlingit, from Glacier Bay who came on board cruise ships and spoke about "frozen thunder," the sound natives heard when bergs would calve off faces of glaciers and crash into the sea. The piece of frozen lightening is in Dan Ramos's right hand.

Doug Gillis

27 febrero , 2021

Ken enjoyed meeting people when traveling who were unlike him. He met the clan children of Dan Ramos when on a trip through the inside passage on the way to Alaska.

Carole (Elliott) Laughlin

27 febrero , 2021

I met Ken in the late seventies. He would truly light up a room when he arrived! I will never forget that beautiful smile and great personality. He was so proud of his Winterfield Booster group and his backyard vegetable garden. I lost touch with Ken over the years. He will certainly be missed by many. My thoughts go out to Mike and Diana and the rest of the family.

Doug Gillis

24 febrero , 2021

Kenneth helped organize and fund many birthday celebrations for his Mother. Pictured here when attending her 86th birthday celebration in December 2003.

Doug Gillis

24 febrero , 2021

Gillis Family on the Blue Ridge Parkway in 1954 when living in Asheville, NC. Pictured left to right are Dan, Thelma,Doug, Glen, Linda, Earl and Kenneth Gillis.

DE LA FAMILIA

Gillis family portrait in Asheville, 1948
Thelma holding baby Earl, Glen holding Linda and Doug,
Ken and Dan completed the family of seven!

DE LA FAMILIA

Family Picnic 1944 while Ken's dad was stationed at Ft Sill, Oklahoma.

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Thelma with Ken and Dan and their new baby sister, Linda.
Taken 1946 at Ft Sill, Oklahoma

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Thelma with Dan and Ken in the sailor uniforms she made for them.

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Ken with his younger brother Dan

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Ken on his 3rd Birthday. The day his Dad left to go overseas for WWII.

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Ken and his parents in 1940 at Ft Bragg, NC.

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Ken with his mom and his new baby brother, Dan in 1941, in Stoney Knob, NC.

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Ken at Ft Bragg, wearing the Army Uniform made by his mom.

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Toddler Ken.