Kenneth Finch (May 24, 1948 - April 01, 2024)

In loving memory of
Kenneth Finch
  • May 24, 1948
  • -
  • April 01, 2024

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Ken Finch was born on May 24, 1948, to Dorothy “Dot” Warren Finch and John Terrel Finch in Powder Springs, Georgia. He was the 5th of seven children, sandwiched between his brothers Terrel and Mike. Ken grew up close to his family, siblings, and more prominent family. He graduated from McEachern High School in 1966 and got a job as a draftsman locally until 1968, when he got married to his first wife, Edie Graham, and was drafted into service with the US Army. In 1969-70, he served in the US Army Blackhorse Armored Calvary Division in Vietnam. He was assigned to a field HQ as a cartographer, and his artistic skills were put to good use when he painted Black Horse emblems on tanks in addition to his other duties.

In 1973, Ken and Edie moved to Garner, North Carolina, and he began working in the fire protection industry, designing and selling sprinkler systems. They welcomed their first child, Kenneth “Kenny” William Finch, Jr., on August 20th, 1974, and two years later, they had their second child, Carrie Madeleine Finch, on September 7, 1976. Ken was active in helping coach Kenny’s soccer team and with his son’s Cub Scout troop. In addition to working full time, he was a Deacon in his church and went to college at night, earning his bachelor’s degree from Wesleyan College.

Following a divorce in 1985, Ken took a job in Ohio, where he lived for several years, continuing his work in the sprinkler business. In the mid-1990s, he moved back to Georgia. He met the love of his life, Sherry Karr Gardner, in 1994; on February 10, 1996, they were married in their Marietta, Georgia, home, surrounded by family and close friends, with Ken Jr. serving as his best man.

For more than 20 years, Ken and Sherry were members of the Central Presbyterian church in Atlanta. Ken was an active Georgia Vietnam Veterans Association member in Marietta, Ga. They loved all the wonderful friends they made in both areas over the years and were gratified at the lasting depth of so many of those friendships.

Sherry and Ken spent 28 years not only as partners in marriage but also as partners in real estate investment. Using their combined skills and know-how, they bought houses that needed renovations, fixed them up, and then managed them as rental properties. Over the years, they rehabbed more than a dozen houses. While Sherry handled the business side, Ken enjoyed the manual labor side- gifted in his ability to build or fix most anything. Ken was affectionately known to be “John Henry with a Hammer”!

Once they retired from their “day jobs,” and while Ken’s health was still good, they continued with property management and moved to The Villages, Florida, in 2018. Ken continued working as a fire sprinkler consultant and inspector until the very end.

Ken was a passionate person. He loved his family; he was skilled with all sorts of tools and had a real talent for drawing and sketching. He loved traveling, a passion he shared with his wife and friends (and his daughter, who traveled with them from time to time). He was fond of his pets, enjoyed playing games, and could talk to anyone about anything- truly a jack-of-all-trades. But perhaps his greatest joy came late in his life with the arrival of his granddaughter, Piper Finch, now 2 years old, who could instantly bring a smile to his face. He could travel up to North Carolina to celebrate with her on her first birthday, and she and her parents returned the favor of traveling down to Florida for his 75th last May.

Ken is survived by his loving wife, Sherry; his children, Ken Jr, Kenny’s wife, Ruth; Carrie Finch-Burriss and her husband, Erik Burriss; his stepson David Gardner; his grandchildren, Shawn Gardner and Piper Finch; his siblings Charlotte Taylor and her husband Jerry, Michael Finch, Karon Fickey and her husband Edsel, his sister-in-law, Rhetta Finch and numerous other nieces, nephews, cousins and kin. He is preceded in death by his parents, John-T and Dorothy; his siblings, Douglas Finch, Joan Hollingsworth, and Terrel Finch; his sister-in-law, Beckie H. Finch; and his stepson, Christopher D. Gardner.

Ken’s family would like to thank the following for the loving support and prayers that they lifted up for us in the past year: Central Presbyterian Church in Atlanta, GA, Kenwood Presbyterian Church in Nottingham, MD, and the many friends and neighbors in The Villages, Fl. and Atlanta, Ga.
The Villages Hospital and Lady Lake Specialty Care, along with Cornerstone Hospice, provided the best care we could have hoped for and we sincerely thank them for their expertise.

Ken will be interred at the Florida National Cemetery in Bushnell on Thursday April 11 at 1:00P. Arrangements for a Celebration of Life are pending.

In lieu of flowers, donations to, an animal shelter in Marion County is suggested in Ken’s honor.

Arrangements entrusted with BALDWIN BROTHERS Funeral & Cremation Society-Spanish Springs, 352-430-1449. Sentiments are encouraged at


Florida National Cemetery

Date & Time:
April 11, 2024 at 1:00 PM

Florida National Cemetery

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  1. Todd Allred says:
    07 Apr 2024
    Ken was a longtime friend, colleague and overall, a great person. He always had a smile - laugh and would
    always put a positive spin on situations when I was down. He was nice, friendly and got along with everyone.
    I did not see him as much as I would have liked to in the last several years; we lost a very kind man, and he will truly be missed by all!

  2. Blandin Karabinos says:
    06 Apr 2024
    Kenneth and Carrie, Sherry and the Finch family, please accept the condolences of the veterans of the the 11th Armored Cavalry; the 11th's veterans of Vietnam and Cambodia. Kenneth was one of us, one of our own. Ken is well remembered as an honorable trooper and a Life member of the 11th ACVVC, whose presence brought comfort and support to his fellow troopers. he will be included on the honor roll of our combat veterans and remembered fondly for his creative and artistic skills. As grateful Americans we (should all) pause and salute a man who was willing to put his life on the line for his country and fellow man. as our burial liturgy clearly states: " ... his life has not ended, merely changed ..." and as we were together then in Vietnam, we will be together again in the life hereafter, warmly embraced in the arms of our Heavenly Father. Chaplain Bill ... 11th ACR (Vietnam 70-71) and 11th Armored Cavalry's Veterans of Vietnam and Cambodia.

  3. Office of Advancement/Alumni Relations, North Carolina Wesleyan University says:
    05 Apr 2024
    Sending caring thoughts and our sincere condolences.

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