ONEONTA – The Rev. Kenneth R. Baldwin, 95, retired United Methodist Church pastor, World War II veteran and Fox Hospital chaplain during his retirement in Oneonta, passed away on Aug. 27, 2018.
Ken was the son of the late Bert and Mae (Clifford) Baldwin of Fayetteville, and was born in Syracuse on June 26, 1923. In 1940, he met the love of his life, Nancy Hall, at a youth camp in Charlotte, Vt. World War II lengthened their courtship, but Ken and Nancy were married in 1948 and shared 70 years of happy marriage. They enjoyed dancing well into Ken’s nineties, often to the applause of onlookers.
Ken studied chemical engineering at Syracuse University, and during World War II served in the Pacific for three years in the Army Corps of Engineers as a combat engineer.
Following the war Ken was called to the ministry. He studied at the University of Edinburgh, Union Theological Seminary and Yale Divinity School. He was ordained to the Christian ministry in 1953 and began his pastoral work at the North Presbyterian Church in Flushing. During this time, Ken and Nancy hosted three refugee families from Hungary and Cuba.
Over his career, Ken served as pastor for a total of eight churches, most in the United Methodist Upper New York Conference. Ken loved to sing, joining the choirs of the churches he served and regional choral groups. He also enjoyed golf.
Following his retirement in 1988, he and Nancy settled in Oneonta. Ken continued to preach, and also served as Fox Hospital chaplain. He was regularly invited to preach at Catholic churches in the region, which reflected his ecumenical spirit. He was an active member in the Rotary and VFW and served on the boards of the Oneonta Catholic Charities and the Foothills Performing Arts Center.
Ken is predeceased by his parents, his brothers Clarence and Guy, and his sister Doris. He is survived by his loving wife, Nancy, son Stuart and his wife Harriet (Cone) Baldwin, daughter Amy and her husband Douglas Berry, daughter Anne Baldwin, and many nieces, nephews, and cousins.
A memorial service will be at 2 p.m. Saturday, Sept, 8, at the Fairport United Methodist Church, 31 West Church St. Interment will be 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 27, at the Grandview Cemetery in Charlotte, Vt.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Ken’s memory to the Fairport Baptist Home Foundation, Syracuse University, or Union Theological Seminary.
Arrangements are entrusted to the David A. Doser Funeral Home.