Obituary: Kenneth G. Himelrick

Kenneth Himerlick
Kenneth Himerlick(WTAP)
Updated: Jun. 14, 2021 at 10:25 AM EDT
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Kenneth G. Himelrick, 80, of Parkersburg, and formerly of Washington, Pennsylvania, died Saturday, June 12th at WVU Medicine Camden Clark Medical Center.

Kenneth was born on January 2nd, 1941, in Wheeling, West Virginia. He was the son of Erma and Kenneth Himelrick. His childhood was spent in Harrisville, West Virginia; Salem, New Jersey; and Parkersburg, West Virginia. He was a 1959 graduate of Parkersburg High School, where he proudly played trumpet in the Big Red Band. Upon graduation, he attended Marietta College, where he received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Chemistry.

Following his graduation from Marietta, he was employed as a chemist by American Cyanamid, and subsequently by Borg-Warner. At Borg-Warner, he moved into management, becoming a senior manager in their Research and Development division. He remained with Borg-Warner, which was later acquired by General Electric, for many years. While at General Electric, he received several patents for  plastic compounds and processes. After his relocation to the Pittsburgh area in the 1990s, he was employed as the Vice President and Technology Director of Washington-Penn Plastics. He was a member of the Society of Plastics Engineers.

He was married to Pamela in the early 1960s until her death in 2016. After Pam’s passing, Ken relocated to Parkersburg, and fulfilled many of his lifelong dreams. These included multiple trips to Europe with his childhood friend John Chumley. They traveled to Switzerland, Germany, Italy, France, and Britain. Ken enjoyed these trips tremendously, especially those to Switzerland, which was his favorite place on earth.

He first visited Switzerland during his time at Borg-Warner, and revisited many times in recent years, telling stories of the Swiss Alps fondly. He also traveled to Holland and The Netherlands, where he reconnected with friends from his days at Borg-Warner/General Electric.

He also fulfilled a dream of traveling to the Canary Islands, taking the day-long flight across the globe with Chumley in 2019. Each trip contained many stories with which he regaled his family after arriving home.

In his final years, Ken made the most of life. In addition to his travels, he made new friends in Parkersburg. He was a regular at Shoney’s and Bob Evans, where he made new friends with his interesting stories of world travel and life. He enjoyed meals out with friends and family. Ken also enjoyed technology, and was always buying new gadgets.

He also fulfilled a childhood dream of becoming a Ham Radio Operator, and was licensed in 2020. Ken was preceded in death by his parents and wife, Pamela. He is survived by his son John (Cheryl) of Parkersburg, daughter Sara Hassett (Tom) of Denver, NC, and grandson Bryce Himelrick of Parkersburg. He is also survived by numerous friends, with whom he made many memories, especially in his final years.

Funeral services will be Wednesday at 11:00am at the Leavitt Funeral Home in Parkersburg with Reverend Kevin Lantz officiating.  Burial will be in the Mt. Olivet Cemetery.  Visitation will be Tuesday from 6-8pm and Wednesday from 10:00am until service time.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Humane Society of Parkersburg  530 29th. Street  Parkersburg, WV. 26101

Online condolences may be sent to the family at

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