A longtime resident of Addy, Kenneth Cordell Scalf, 95, passed away in Chewelah on March 29, 2013. He was born to John Henry and Mabel (Thornson) Scalf on October 1, 1917 in Des Moines, Iowa, one of six children.
Ken loved his county and his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, and he talked often of the greatest commandments as the bedÂ¬rock for his life: Found in Matthew 23 verse 37 - 40. Though a man with strong convictions on many subjects and solid prinÂ¬ciples of right and wrong that led him to firmness and someÂ¬times sharpness towardothers in that regard, he was kind-hearted, generous and caring. He was attentive for opportuniÂ¬ties to contribute to others, to give care to those in need, and to offer words of encouragement generally.
Characteristically, Ken had a smile, warm greeting, and cheery remark. He was respected in the community and motiÂ¬vated by the belief that he had something to contribute. Many years ago, he ran for Mayor in Homer, Alaska, and in 1996 he ran for â€śConstitutional Sheriffâ€ť of Stevens County.
He grew up in Des Moines, Iowa, and in 1933 hopped a train West and went to Bigfork, Montana, where for a time he joined uncles and grandparents. In Montana, he fought forest fires, trained in a â€śstrong manâ€™s course,â€ť and ran in the Rockies. He would fight in the ring on weekends for entertainment. Self-styled â€śtough guysâ€ť would come from far and near to challenge him. He learned tracking techniques and would hunt deer to help feed people in the Depression. He was intrigued by Alaska and stowed away on the Matanuska in 1936, came to Ward Cove near Ketchikan and worked in the CCCS, and fish canÂ¬neries.
Ken returned to the states and joined the U.S. Navy in 1943. He served his country honorably and courageously in the South Pacific as Chief Boatswainâ€™s Mate in the 107th Seabeesâ€™ Battalion, and saw plenty of action. Ken had several remarkable stories of combat and engineering solutions associated with his work on Tinian.
He was proud of his country and proud to be a veteran; he wore his Seabeeâ€™s hat whenever he was in public.
In 1945, he created a war surplus business in Seattle, only to return to Alaska. He worked on various electrical projects and for electrical contractors and served as Union RepresenÂ¬tative for the IBEW, Local 77, Seattle. He received a â€śQâ€ť clearÂ¬ance, and worked for the Department of Labor and Industries, Safety Division, State of Washington.
He worked in the Pacific Northwest and Alaska and was in the electrical trade for 50 years. His family would sometimes go with him to where his work led him. He superintended crews of several hundred in extending electrical power throughout Washington State, and would shut down unsafe work or working practices.
Ken moved to Homer, Alaska 1970, built Glacier Drive Inn on the Spit and a log/rock home on Kalgin Island in the Cook Inlet. He purchased a fish site on the island. His extended secÂ¬ond time in Alaska was a high point of his life, but eventually he came back to milder climes and settled in northern Stevens County.
Ken was always on top of politics and current events and shared his views with anyone who would listen. In his later years, in addition to his natural interest in and concern to help others, he also liked to play cards socially, watch the birds and wildlife that he fed, garden fruit and vegetables, and preserve the harvest. He spent countless hours researching on the InÂ¬ternet and had many wonderful friends he keeps in touch with.
He is survived by his two sons Clyde, of Deer Park, and Martis, Goshin, Indiana; along with grandchildren and great-grandchildren, and lots of friends. Many of his friends were with him only in memory because of his age.
A memorial service for Ken will be held at a time and location to be announced and also posted on this website.
Please visit this on-line memorial to sign the guestbook and share in the memorial personallyâ€”a story meaningful from your life and associated with Ken at www.danekasfuneralchapel.com.