Kenneth Joens

October 29, 1939 ~ March 22, 2022 (age 82)


Kenneth Duane Joens, age 82, formally from Portal, Arizona, passed away Tuesday March 22, 2022, in his daughter Maria’s home in Witter, Arkansas. Ken was born to the late Elmer and Leona Joens in Waverly Iowa, Western Douglas Township, on October 29, 1939. He graduated from East High School in Waterloo in 1958, as did his brothers Larry and Robert, his sister Carol, and many of his nieces and nephews. David graduated from Tripoli High. Much of the family still resides in the Waterloo area. Ken received a basketball scholarship to attend Wartburg college and then transferred to Texas Lutheran University where he graduated with a major in Sociology in 1961. Ken met his wife, Maurine Niemeyer, while attending the classes at TLU, where Maurine was teaching at the time. They were married April 2, 1961, in Knippa, Texas. In 1965 he graduated from Wartburg Theological Seminary with a master’s degree in Theology. Ken’s knowledge and wisdom exceeded that of many. Not only was he a well-educated man from attending colleges, but he was also extremely knowledgeable about making the most use of the other gifts God gave him. This is evidenced by the way that he and his family survived on the farm in Arkansas to his later days in their life in the desert of Arizona. He was a man that could adapt to any conditions and prosper. From hunting and fishing to setting up a solar power system to power his home and a gravity pump to provide water. These are just a few of examples of the many ways we witnessed just how great a man he was. Kenneth was a servant to his God in all aspects of his life. This was reflected in his interactions at home, in the church, and his community every day. He was the Director of the Family History Center of Animas, New Mexico. In addition to his service to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, he also served his community as a fireman and EMT. He was willing to help anyone one in the community in any way he could at the drop of a hat. His charismatic nature was observed by his family, neighbors, and anyone that was able to be blessed by his presence. He had a dimpled smile that was unforgettable and laugh that could lighten even the heaviest heart. He brought the teachings of the Bible to people through music and skits that kept observers spellbound. As he was blessed with the gift of musical talent, he shared this by playing the fiddle, accordion and guitar while singing. He could hear a song and turn around and play it. A couple of his favorite songs to play were the gospel song “This Ol House” and “Sister Josephine”, a song that reflected his great sense of humor. The memories he gave us left us with gifts that will be cherished for the rest of our lives. He was preceded in death by his parents, Elmer and Leona; and his brother Larry Joens. Ken is survived by his wife, Maurine Joens; brothers David and Robert Joens; sister Carol Chapman; son Christopher Joens; daughters Christine Monson, Victoria Joens, Maria Wilson, Anna Joens and Julia Gregory; grandchildren Hannah, James, Catherine, Jonathon, Coleman, Seth, Christian, Derrick, Caleb, Cecily, Adrienne, Dante, Zac, Ashley, Olivia and Oliver; great grandchildren Sam, Clara, Otto and Valencia. Ken and Maurine enjoyed 60 years of marriage. Ken’s family would like to thank friends and family for their outpouring of love and support during this time. The family would like to express thanks for the wonderful help and care of Washington Regional Hospice. Staff members Cathy, Alma, Bobbie, Thomas and Dillon have a special place in our hearts. A private remembrance will be held at his daughter’s home in Witter, Arkansas.

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