1944 ~ January 22, 2015
The Reverend Dr. Donald Herbert Ketcham of Unionville, CT passed away unexpectedly Thursday, January 22 at the age of 72. Donald graduated from Lafayette College in 1964, where he majored in economics, played varsity football, and was a member of Phi Gamma Delta fraternity. He received a Master of Divinity from Andover Newton Theological School in 1968 and a Doctor of Ministry with Distinction from Hartford Seminary in 1988. Donald faithfully served as pastor of First Congregational Church in Kent, CT from 1967-1972 and West Avon Congregational Church, Avon, CT where he retired in 2004 after 32 years of service. Don was very active in the Avon community where he and his wife, Carol, raised their four children. He loved working with youth and was a youth soccer coach for 17 years, a leader of the church Pilgrim Fellowship youth group and a chaperone for several outreach service trips. He served as a chaplain at UCONN Health Center and on the board of the Connecticut Conference of the United Church of Christ. In retirement, Don especially enjoyed spending extra time at his beloved northern Maine Island, Gotts, where he enjoyed the spectacular beauty of the sea, captaining his refurbished boat, and building models and searching for sea treasures with his grandchildren. He continued to be an avid supporter of community sports and would often be seen on the sidelines, cheering loudly for the Avon High School and Avon Old Farms teams. A lifelong animal lover, he spent countless hours at the park throwing balls to his faithful Field Bred Springer Spaniels, Tag and Katie. Don leaves behind his loving wife of 52 years, Carol (Carpenter) Ketcham, four children and their spouses; Susannah Kinsella and husband Brian, Robin Ketcham and wife Joanne, Wren Rex and husband Nathaniel, Emily Fox and husband Ryan. He was the proud grandfather of 8 grandchildren; Andrew, Matthew and Alison Kinsella, Maggie Ketcham, Scarlett Rex, and Anna, Ethan and Jillian Fox. He is also survived by his brother Bruce Ketcham and wife Jan. Don loved being a husband and father, faithfully served his church, and was a pillar of his community. He will be dearly missed by the many people whose lives he touched. Friends may call at The Ahern Funeral Home, 111 Main St., Rt. 4, Unionville, CT on Sunday January 25, from 2 p.m. – 4 p.m. A Funeral Service will be held Monday, January 26 at 11:00 a.m. at West Avon Congregational Church, 280 Country Club Rd, Avon, CT. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Donald’s name to Our Companions Animal Rescue, P.O. Box 956 Manchester, CT 06045.Sunday, January 25, 2015 from 2:00-4:00pm Monday, January 26, 2015 at 10:00am in West Avon Congregational Church – AvonOur Companions Animal Rescue, P.O. Box 956 Manchester, CT 06045.