Kenneth Leroy Smock
September 23, 1942 – November 21, 2019
Kenneth Leroy Smock, longtime analyst with the Central Intelligence Agency, passed away in Fairfax, VA, on November 21, 2019, at the age of 77.
Ken was born September 23, 1942, in Manhattan, KS, to Merle and Ivaloo (Scholfield) Smock. They moved often due to his father’s work with Continental Trailways, living in Kansas, Illinois, and Oklahoma before settling in Salina, KS, for Ken’s high school years. Ken graduated from Kansas Wesleyan University in Salina, KS, in 1965 cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree in History. After marrying Jan Menhusen on June 5, 1966, they made their first home at the University of Kansas, where Ken attained a Master of Arts in Slavic and Soviet Studies in 1974 after serving honorably in the Army in Vietnam and Germany for three years. Ken and Jan then moved to Manassas, VA, in 1976 where he lived for the next 40 years.
Ken began his professional career as an analyst with the Central Intelligence Agency in 1974. Over the next 31 years, Ken worked in various leadership positions, bringing his tireless dedication, expertise, and depth of knowledge on Central Europe and the Balkans to countless important events of the day as well as in mentoring many junior analysts.
Outside of work, Ken’s greatest passion was his family. He loved to spend time with his sons and grandchildren. Family road trips to visit relatives and explore new landmarks became an annual and cherished tradition. After retirement, Ken enjoyed traveling across the country with his wife as she conducted genealogical research. He was a voracious reader and he continued to satiate his inquisitive nature by taking classes at George Mason University. Ken was an avid supporter of the DC area sports teams and his beloved Kansas Jayhawks. His warm laugh, witty puns, and gentle nature will live on in all who knew him.
Mr. Smock is preceded in death by his wife, parents, and brother Edward. Survivors include two sons, Robert A. Smock and wife Sarah of Fairfax, VA; David J. Smock and wife Lisa, of Fairfax, VA; three grandchildren, Cora, Lydia, and Thomas Smock; and brother Keith A. Smock and wife Lyn, of Portland, OR.
Ken was a man of singular intelligence, integrity, and warmth who will be dearly missed by his family and friends. A celebration of Ken’s life will be held Friday, Dec. 6 at 11:00 AM at St. Thomas United Methodist Church in Manassas. Graveside services will be in the cemetery in Jewell, KS, at a later date. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be given to the Lewy Body Dementia Association or to the Center for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies at the University of Kansas.
- Memorial Service Friday, December 6, 2019