VeteranKenneth K. Stevens, Publisher And Business Man Dies At Age 57

The Astoria Community was shocked and saddened when word spread of the sudden and unexpected death of Kenneth K. Stevens, President of K. K. Stevens Publishing Co. and Publisher of The Astoria South Fulton Argus.

Kenneth Keith Stevens, 57, of Astoria, died at 10:20 p.m. Monday, July 11, 1988, in the emergency room at Culbertson Memorial Hospital in Rushville.

He was born June 10, 1931, in Madrid, Nebr., the son of Harry and Thelma (Streeter) Stevens. He married Mary Ann Murphy on Dec. 8, 1956, in Madrid. She preceded him in death on April 26, 1977. On Sept. 18, 1982 at London Mills he married Carolyn Schisler. She survives.

Also surviving are four children, Tom Stevens, Mrs. Randy (Stephanie) Hammond and Mrs. Wendell (Karen) Schisler, all of Astoria, and Tim Stevens, at home; two stepdaughters, Kimberly Schisler of Houston, Tex. and Jill Schisler of London Mills; one stepson, Kurt Schisler of Astoria; three grandsons, Chad Hammond, Kody Schisler and Scott Stevens; one stepgranddaughter, Elicia Whitmer; three stepgrandsons, Corey and Aaron Barnes and Chad Schisler; one sister, Mrs. Margaret Lueck of Iliff, Colo.; and one brother, Gerald Stevens of Madrid, Nebr.

He was preceded in death by his parents and one sister.

Mr. Stevens was a graduate of Madrid High School in 1949 and served in the U.S. Air Force from 1951 to 1955. In 1959 he and his wife purchased The Argus-Searchlight from A. N. Price and had made his home in Astoria since that time.

The newspaper at that time was printed by the letterpress process and when offset printing was being introduced, Mr. Stevens was the first printer in the area to install such a press. The name of the paper was changed to The Astoria South Fulton Argus after the purchase of The Table Grove Herald from Verne and Frances Keeney. The business increased and the present building was built to provide more space for the expanding company as more presses and additional equipment were added to keep up with the demands.

Mr. Stevens used this paper's Rough Edges column to express his views on various issues of the community. Some, his readers agreed with and some they didn't, but he always tried to keep the good of the community at heart and gave opponents the opportunity of rebuttal.

Mr. Stevens was a member of the Astoria United Methodist Church, Astoria American Legion Post 25, Illinois Press Association, Township Officials of Illinois, American Newspaper Publishing Association, National Federation of Independent Business, Astoria Merchants Association, Astoria Masonic Lodge #100 AF&AM, Illinois Valley Shrine Club, Ansar Shrine of Springfield, and Scottish Rite Valley of Peoria.

Funeral services will be held at 11:00 a.m. Friday morning at the Astoria United Methodist Church with Rev. Guy Freeman officiating. Burial will be in the Astoria Cemetery with full military honors at the grave.

Visitation will be from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday night at Shawgo Memorial Home in Astoria with Masonic Services at 8:30 p.m.

Memorials may be made to the Astoria United Methodist Church or to the Shriners Crippled Children's Hospital.


Published in the Astoria South Fulton Argus on 7/13/1988

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