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Kenneth Edward Bordenkircher Sr.

May 22, 1945 December 12, 2016
Kenneth Edward Bordenkircher Sr.
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Obituary for Kenneth Edward Bordenkircher Sr.

Kenneth Edward Bordenkircher Sr., devout father, loving husband, devoted friend, exceptional welder, & incomparable teller of stories; passed away in the early morning hours of December 12th, 2016 in Sacramento California surrounded by those he loved. Known by most as “Ken”, and “Kenny” by his siblings; Ken was born in Warren Minnesota on May 22nd, 1945 to father Cletus Anthony Bordenkircher & Dorothy Mary Bordenkircher. Ken was the youngest of his siblings, with brothers Leonard, Earl & Everett; and sisters Margy & Joyce. Ken was raised on a humble farm in Argyle Minnesota & attended Crookston High School. Upon graduating in 1963, he moved to Fremont California. After arriving to California, Ken worked for FMC Corporation. He would often frequent the Centerville Food Market Bakery. Ken stopped in one day to purchase donuts & although the girl at the bakery warned him that the donuts that day were stale, he opted to purchase them anyway; only to call back the bakery later that day to complain about the stale donuts. Ken later confessed that the call to complain was nothing more than a sneaky tactic to talk to a girl that caught his eye. Ken went on to marry the bakery girl, Frances Evelyn Henderson on January 8th, 1966. Three weeks into his marriage, Ken was drafted by the US Army and proudly served in the Vietnam War. Upon returning from Vietnam; Ken went on to work as a Hydraulic Mechanic for Heil Equipment Company, where he dedicated his life to the craft he loved. Ken & his family moved to Dixon California in 1986, when Heil relocated their operations. Ken reluctantly left Heil in the early 90’s. Leaving Heil was one of the most heartbreaking decisions Ken ever had to make. Ken went on to work at various companies throughout the next few years & although he enjoyed them, Ken never found the same passion he had at Heil until he found Berendsen Fluid, in West Sacramento. It was at Berendsen where Ken found his smile again. Ken went on to work for Berendsen until ultimately retiring in 2014. Ken spent the last 2 years enjoying time with his 4 grandchildren. Ken’s passion for welding and creating things with metal was undeniable. He was proud to show people the things he created & his eyes would light up as he would explain the processes of his creations. This passion was infectious & influential to those fortunate enough to experience it. He never grew tired of his passion, and would work with metal every day if he could. It was never enough. Famous for his unorthodox cooking methods, Ken was undeniably loved for several dishes including steak sandwiches, pizzas, and SOS. He had an unearthly tolerance for super-heated food. Dinners hot enough to cause third degree burns on the common man’s tongue, Ken would throw back into the microwave for “just a few more minutes”. Legend has it that Ken’s taste buds were tested in a secret government lab in a covert effort to create suits that protect against thermal radiation. The government denies any validity to these claims to this very day. It did not matter how hot the dish was, it was never enough. Ever the prankster, Ken would often terrify his children to such a degree that rumor has it his eldest daughter continues to attend weekly therapy sessions. On family vacations in the family RV, Ken was known to drive up dangerously close behind vehicles & then proceed to utilize the custom installed police-grade megaphone to kindly tell drivers to “get out of the way”. They did. And it didn’t matter how many pranks he played, they were always funny. And there was never enough. Where Ken excelled the most, however; was his ability to tell stories. And boy, did he have some gems. From missing life changing opportunities to be a partner at a national pizza chain at its humble beginnings, to his deadly accurate aim at tossing earthworms in the mouths of unsuspecting recipients; Ken had a knack for the art of the narrative. And it did not matter how many times you may have heard the story before, he told them so well, that it was never enough. Ken enjoyed the simple things in life. He had an aversion to furniture & you would always find Ken laying on the floor. No sofa or recliner could match the allure of a carpeted horizon to Ken. He would often get his sons together and sometimes a few of their friends and pack up in the RV for various local fishing trips. He would always stop by McDonald’s on the way out and purchase anywhere between 10 to 37 of his beloved cheeseburgers. There were never enough. Ken Bordenkircher was a special soul. Ken held integrity to the highest standard, & nothing meant more to him than his word. He would often proudly say, “I tell it like it is”, & he certainly did. Ken was a good man. A proud man. He was a man of impeccable character. He had a magic about him where you just wanted to be as close to him as possible at all times. An energy about him that you wanted to be a part of. A warmth about him that you had to bask in. And no matter how much time you spent with him, it was never enough. We bid you farewell to you, dad. As we all stand on that street corner, & with the smell of Brut aftershave in the air, we wave to you goodbye as you drive past us in your car, waving back & honking your horn. Only it’s going to be so very hard to leave the street corner this time dad… as it was never enough. Ken is proceeded by his father Cletus, mother Dorothy, & brothers Leonard, Earl, & Everett. Ken is survived by his life partner of over 50 years, Frances. His daughter Tammy Lynn Rutz & her children Devon & Dylan. His first son & patronymic namesake Kenneth Jr. along with his children Malia & subsequent patronymic successor Kenneth III. His youngest son John Anthony. And Ken’s sisters; Margy & Joyce. In lieu of flowers, the family indicates Ken would have preferred donations be made in his memory to the following charities. Please be sure to indicate any donations are made “In Memory of Ken Bordenkircher”. Oakland Children’s Hospital Save The Redwoods League

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Previous Events





12:00 PM 12/21/2016 12:00:00 PM
Milton Carpenter Funeral Home

569 N. First St.
Dixon, CA 95620

Milton Carpenter Funeral Home
569 N. First St. Dixon 95620 CA
United States

Cemetery Details


Silveyville Cemetery Final Resting Place

800 S. First St.
Dixon, CA 95620

800 S. First St. Dixon 95620 CA
United States

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