Willard L. Ketner
January 2, 1919-February 7, 2010


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Life Legacy

KETNER, WILLARD L. (BILL), age 91 of Avon Park, FL died Sunday, February 7, 2010 at the Palms of Sebring.
Bill was born in West Terre Haute, Indiana in 1919, son of Mary and John Ketner. He graduated from Moody Bible Institute in 1944.
Bill retired from Union Carbide Corporation, Films Packaging Division, in Chicago in 1984 after 39 years service.
He pastored two churches; New Hope Baptist Church, Clay City, Indiana and 1st Prairie Creek Baptist Church, Prairie Creek, Indiana prior to his relocation to the Chicago area.
He was active in the Terre Haute Jaycees and in various community projects and fund raising events for the Jaycees. He was a member of the Terre Haute Personnel Club and the Vigo County School Board. He officiated high school and college basketball throughout the State of Indiana and recruited for college programs throughout the Vigo County, Indiana area.
In 1983, Bill was appointed Honorary Mayor of Kentland, Indiana. He was honored by Indiana Governor Bob Orr and presented the title of Sagamore of the Wabash in 1984. The Mayor of Terre Haute IN proclaimed May 21, 1987 as W.L. (Bill) Ketner Day for his contributions to the community. He served on the Board of Trustees of Taylor University, Upland, IN from 1968-1978 and was honored in 1983 for two decades of outstanding contributions to Business and Accounting students. Purdue University’s Placement Office honored him for his assistance in placement of graduates from 1945-1984.
Other honors bestowed on Bill were: receipt of key to the City of Centerville Iowa in 1964; the Arkansas Traveler by Governor W. Rockefeller in 1970; recognized by University of Arkansas as a Distinguished Friend of the University in 1970; commissioned as a Kentucky Colonel by Kentucky Governor Julian M. Carroll in 1977; appointed Arkansas Traveler by the Governor Clinton in 1979; appointed Honorary Mayor of City of Pauls Valley, Oklahoma in 1980; awarded title of Honorary Citizen of Oklahoma by Governor George Nigh in 1983; appointed Honorary Mayor of Osceola, Arkansas in 1983; appointed Colonel Aide de Camp of the Governor’s Staff by Governor Lamar Alexander of the State of Tennessee in 1983.
Bill served as Executive Director of the Avon Park, FL Chamber of Commerce from 1984-1987. He also chaired many fundraising events for Walker Memorial Hospital, Avon Park, FL. He received the Citizen of the Year Award from the Avon Park Chamber of Commerce, 1988. He was a member of Rotary Club of Avon Park, served as Sergeant of Arms (1987-88), President (1991-93) and was a Paul Harris Fellow. He was appointed a member of the Sebring Utilities Commission and served 1991-1993. Bill sat on the Board Salvation Army for Highlands County for many years. He also held offices in the River Greens Home Owners Association from 1998- present
Bill was preceded in death by his wife of 67 years, Alice M. (Pard) Ketner in 2007. He is survived his children, Judith A. Ketner and her former husband Robert L. Wolff of Avon Park FL; David L. Ketner and wife Claudia of Marietta GA; three grandsons, Todd J. Ketner & wife Kristi of Birmingham, AL; Jay A. Ketner & wife Elizabeth of Plattsburgh NY and Lane B. Ketner & wife Julie of Atlanta GA. He is also survived by his brother George (Hank) and sister Marjorie Long of Terre Haute, and several nieces and nephews. He is also survived by brother-in-law, Wayne E. Buchanan, Jr. of Nashville TN. He was preceded in death by his parents, his sisters, Helen Wyatt and Martha Switzer, and his brother, John W. Ketner.
Visitation will be Saturday, Feb. 13th, 4-6:00 PM at Morris Funeral Chapel. Funeral Service will be Sunday, Feb. 14th at 2:00 PM at Morris Funeral Chapel with Burial to follow at Lakeview Memorial Gardens, Avon Park. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the W. L. “Bill” Ketner Memorial, Taylor University, 236 Reade Avenue, Upland IN 46989. Condolences may be expressed at www.morrisfuneralchapel.com. Arrangements by: MORRIS FUNERAL CHAPEL, Sebring, FL.

Visitation Service

4:00 PM-6:00 PM, Sarturday, February 13, 2010
Morris Funeral Chapel
307 S. Commerce Ave. Sebring, FL 33870
Click Here to view a map.

Visitation Service

1:00 PM - 2:00 PM, Sunday, February 14, 2010
Morris Funeral Chapel
307 S. Commerce Ave. Sebring, FL 33870
Click Here to view a map.

Funeral Services

2:00 PM, Sunday, February 14, 2010
Morris Funeral Chapel
307 S. Commerce Ave. Sebring, FL 33870
Click Here to view a map.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Lakeview Memorial Gardens
854 Memorial Dr. Avon Park, FL 33825
Click Here to view a map.


Born: January 2, 1919
Place of Birth: Terre Haute, IN USA
Death: February 7, 2010
Place of Death: Sebring, FL USA
Occupation: Retired

Survived By

Judith A. Ketner, Daughter
David L. Ketner, Son
George "Hank" Ketner, Brother
Marjorie Long, Sister
Todd J. Ketner, Grandson
Jay A. Ketner, Grandson
Lane B. Ketner, Grandson
Wayne E. Buchanan, Jr., Brother-in-law
Robert L. Wolff, Former Son-in-law


02/12/2010 - Kelly Molina
Mr. Bill was a wonderful man, I loved coming to work every day just so I could see him, he brought a smile to my face and many others. My three daughters also grew very fond of him, he will be greatly missed. We all love you deeply. Our sincere condolences go out to his entire family.


02/14/2010 - Sheryl Ketner
It has been my privilege and honor to know and love Bill Ketner for 40+ years. There was never a person in need that he did not give what he had to help fill that need. He was a man without pretension who loved unconditionally and with all of his heart. He has been a role model without equal to my sons, and many other young men. I will miss him, but I know his joy is now complete and we will be together again in the future. Thank you, Pop, just for being you, and sharing your love with me. Love Sheryl


02/15/2010 - Dan Smiley
To the family of Bill Ketner, I had the privilage and enjoyment of working with Bill for 3 decades, and I never knew anyone with more enthusiasm for life. He was helpful whenever asked, and when not asked he would offer anyway. And fun to be around. A quick wit and fast mind, loyal to the core too. It was great knowing him. I sent a long snail mail to him 6 months ago, but it was returned as I guess wrong address. To my friend Dave and Judith my sympathy goes out to you and your families. Yet, I'm sure you broght deep joy and fulfillment to Bill's life. Dan Smiley, Lynden, WA


02/21/2010 - Dick Youngstrom
Dave, sorry to hear of his passing, but many great years and accomplishments. thanks for al the great times in high school. Dick


04/02/2010 - Lane Ketner
I'm the luckiest guy in the world to have him as my Grandfather. He was a good, decent, kind, smart, and hardworking man. He was one of the few people I have ever known who allowed his actions to really speak louder than his words. He treated people extremely well, and was very humble. He's a great guy and I miss him a lot. Love you Oompa!