Obituaries » Kenneth Graham Carlson
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September 6, 1944 - August 2, 2022
Funeral Home Russon Mortuary Farmington
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SEPTEMBER 6, 1944 – AUGUST 2, 2022
Our beloved husband, father, papa, and patriot, Kenneth Graham Carlson, passed away peacefully while surrounded by family on the evening of August, 2, 2022 due to the effects of Alzheimer’s Disease.
Ken was born in Detroit, Michigan, to Gunnar C and H Mabel Carlson. The second son of a career Army officer, Ken learned the life of a soldier early on as his father’s assignments moved the family across the globe, from Virginia, to Japan, to Vietnam. Following in his father and brother’s footsteps, Ken attended the prestigious U.S. Military Academy at West Point where he became a member of the storied Long Grey Line, Class of 1966. Ken’s time at West Point would shape much of his character and life. He was an outstanding scholar, athlete, and soldier. While at West Point, Ken was in the company of cadets who marched at President John F. Kennedy’s funeral. Ken’s relationships with his West Point classmates lasted a lifetime.
Ken embodied the values of Duty. Honor. Country. He would go on to have a twenty-six year career as an Army officer, rising to the rank of full Colonel. A decorated Airborne and Ranger school graduate, his first assignment was in the divided city of Berlin, Germany, where he met his wife, Victoria Nelson. Ken served a tour of duty during the Vietnam War experiencing serious combat while commanding a company of 300 troops. After returning from Vietnam, Ken married Victoria Nelson at Fort Douglas, Utah on December 6, 1969. During his career, Ken excelled as a student, graduating from multiple military institutions and receiving a Masters degree from Princeton University. The Army realized his gift for teaching and provided many opportunities for him to teach others, including at his Alma Mater of West Point. Near the end of his career he was recognized as a brilliant military strategist. Among Ken’s many military honors are two Legions of Merit, two Bronze Stars (one for valor), and a Purple Heart.
Ken loved reading, doing genealogical work, writing poetry, skiing, playing golf, and giving memorable historical tours of the monuments and war memorials in Washington D.C. and Civil War battlefields. Every December he cheered loudly “GO ARMY! BEAT NAVY!”. He was a man of faith with a great sense of humor, fantastic life stories to tell, and a family he loved dearly.
Ken is survived by his wife, Victoria (Nelson), four children, Melissa (Thomas) Stickney, Christopher (Audrey) Carlson, Samantha (Travis) Lee, Matthew (Mindy) Carlson, thirteen cherished grandchildren, and a brother, Gunnar (Beverly) Carlson.
Funeral services will be held at 12:00 P.M. on Friday, August 19, 2022 at the Kaysville Stake Center, 615 North Flint Street, Kaysville, Utah . Friends and family may pay their respects on Friday morning between 10:00 – 11:30 A.M. Ken will be interred at the Utah Veterans Cemetery at Camp Williams in Bluffdale, Utah on Thursday, August 18, 2022. In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation to The Alzheimer’s Association