Merlyn Joseph Kesch

September 30, 1938December 1, 2018

Merlyn Joseph Kesch passed away on Dec. 1, 2018 surrounded by his family while joking until the end.

Merlyn was born on September 30, 1938 in Tintah, MN to John Leo Kesch and Margaret Ann Burtzel.He worked at Emanuel Hospital for 47 years in the food service department. He was known as the #1 grouch. During his career at Emanuel, he also worked at the Lloyd Center ice skating rink.

He met his wife, Carol Marie Gentzler, while working at Emanuel's swimming pool as a lifeguard. They married on April 8, 1967.

Merlyn was involved in Boy Scouts for many years and loved to go camping. In his later years, he loved to do jigsaw puzzles, watch TV, and most of all spend time with his family, especially his grandchildren. Merlyn was preceded in death by his mother and father.

He is survived by his wife of 51 years, Carol; daughter, Lisa McKinney (James Sr.); son, Jeffery (Helena); 10 grandchildren; 10 great grandchildren; sister, Delaine Murphy; 2 nieces; a great niece; and 2 great nephews.

A funeral mass will be held at Holy Cross Catholic Church,5227 N. Bowdoin St. Portland, OR 97203, on Friday, Dec. 7, 2018 at 11am followed by a reception. Interment will take place at 1:30pm at Mt. Calvary.

In lieu of flowers the family requests donations to be made to Holy Cross Catholic School.


  • Carol Kesch, Wife
  • Lisa McKinney (James Sr.), Daughter
  • Jeffery Kesch (Helena), Son
  • Delaine Murphy, Sister
  • Merlyn also leaves behind 10 grandchildren; 10 great grandchildren; 2 nieces; 1 great niece; and 2 great nephews.


  • Funeral Service Friday, December 7, 2018
  • Graveside Service Friday, December 7, 2018

Merlyn Joseph Kesch

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Patricia Bender

December 3, 2018

When we were teenagers, our family would go over to Uncle John and Aunt Margaret (Merlyn's parents) house, for an afternoon Christmas visit. There, Merlyn, my sisters and I would play cards, crazy 8 for hours. We always looked forward to it as we had so much fun trying to beat Merlyn.
Ben and I had the privilege to go to Merlyn's 80 th birthday get together, I'll always remember what he said, when he saw everyone there, his words were "Oh they're all here, all of them". Merlyn was loved and will always be remembered. Rest in Peace Merlyn.
Loved you, Cousin Pat