Ken passed away peacefully mid-morning, February 24, 2022, surrounded by loved ones and pets. He was born in 1942 in Flora, Illinois to Neal and Versa Burgess Markham. He grew up in nearby Cisne and was a lover of nature, adventures, and good stories. He always lived his life to the fullest and chose to do so through the pathways he was presented as a sojourner, teacher, pilot, gardener, carpenter, astronomer, and potter. Above all else, he gave his heart and soul as a devoted husband and father.
Ken graduated from Graceland University with a BA in Art and taught in the late sixties in Missouri immediately followed by an adventure on the back of a motorcycle through Europe. He spent the majority of his working years as an employee of Cumberland Trail Library System and Shawnee Library System delivering books to libraries in Southern Illinois. He cherished these jobs and grew to be even more inquisitive, creative, and kind.
He is survived by his wife Helen and daughter, Olivia, and numerous relatives and friends he met along the way. He will be missed. Since he was never one for celebrations or a call to attention, his family would like to honor his life by spreading his love of books and curiosity to anyone who seeks. In lieu of a funeral, cards, or anything special, please consider donating to his favorite library: Flora Public Library, 216 N Main Street, Flora, IL 62839 618-662-6553.
Williams Funeral Home is assisting the family with arrangements. Condolences can be given to the family online at