Massena- Mr. Phillip V. VanKennen, 90, passed away Thursday July 16, 2015 at the St. Regis Nursing Home surrounded by his family. Arrangements have been entrusted to Hammill Funeral Home in Winthrop.
Phil was born in Norfolk on May 5, 1925 to the late Carl and Goldie (Grant) VanKennen. He was raised and educated locally, graduating from Norwood-Norfolk High School. He proudly served his country in the US ARMY from 1951-1956, earning an honorable discharge.
On August 17, 1974 he married Annie LaMay in Brasher Falls, sharing in a blessed union for 40 years, complete with hard work, raising their family together, laughter, and love.
Phil worked as a Master Mechanic at the Paper Mill in Potsdam, retiring after 42 years. In earlier years, he also spent time working as a steel builder on the railroad. Gifted with an eye for craftsmanship, he was wood worker at heart and loved building things. He loved the outdoors and any time spent on his John Deer tractor. He enjoyed hunting, fishing, especially for musky, and frogging with Annie.
Phil was a member of the American Legion in Norwood and the Am Vets Post #4 in Massena.
He is survived by his wife, Annie, his children: James "Jimmy" VanKennen of Norfolk, Cynthia Brothers of Norfolk, Debra and Michael Conner of Norfolk, Bethany Derouchia of Massena, Marsha and Lyle Rowe or Norwood, Susan and Randy Richey of Plattsburg, and Lisa Despaw of Norfolk, his step-children: Charlotte and Edward Misiaszek of Potsdam, Herbert Waldruff Jr. of North Lawrence, and Dale and Terry Waldruff of Canton, many grandchildren and great-grandchildren, a brother, Robert VanKennen of Norfolk, and several nieces, nephews, and cousins.
Phil was predeceased by a daughter-in-law, Belva VanKennen, a grandson, Brian Francis, and his brothers, Jack, Francis, and William VanKennen
Visitation will be Sunday from 4-7 at the funeral home. Phil's Funeral Service and Celebration of Life will be Monday at 10:30am at the Knapp Station Community Church in Norfolk with Rev. Lee Sweeney officiating. Burial will follow at Bixby Cemetery in Norfolk.
For those wishing to express an act of kindness, memorial contributions in Phil's honor may be made to the American Cancer Society; envelopes will be available at the funeral home.
Memories and condolences may be shared with his family at www.hammillfh.com.