C. Frederick “Fred” Kekko

HANCOCK – C. Frederick “Fred” Kekko, 87, of Hancock, died on Tuesday evening, April 23, 2013, at PortagePointe in Hancock.

He was born on Nov. 11, 1925, in Lewiston, Michigan, a son of the late Albert and Fanny (Thompson) Kekko. He attended local schools and graduated from Gaylord High School. He attended Michigan State University, earning a Bachelor of Science Degree in Forestry.

During World War II, Fred served in the United States Air Force on B-29 bombers in the Pacific Theater.

He was first employed in the U.S. Forest Service in Utah. He then returned to Michigan, first to Menominee County and then spending most of his working career as a soil conservationist in Houghton, Baraga, and Keweenaw counties. He retired in 1984.

He was first married to Helen Mary Tamblyn who preceded him in death in 1974. He then married Margaret Ziemnick on April 16, 1977, at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Calumet.

He was a member of the Church of the Resurrection in Hancock where he served as a Eucharistic Minister. He was a long-time MTU Huskies hockey fan. He also belonged to the Soil Conservation Society of America, and was recently honored for belonging to the Alfred Erickson Post 186 American Legion of Hancock for 60 plus years. In the past, he published Mining Gazette articles related to his field of work.

Besides his parents and first wife, he was also preceded in death by a brother, William Kekko and a nephew, John Ziemnick. He is survived by his wife of 36 years, Margaret of Hancock; a sister, Trudy Alter of San Francisco, Calif., a brother-in-law, Jim (Joy) Ziemnick and family of Virginia. He will also be missed by the family pet dog, Owen.

A Funeral Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 11 a.m. on Saturday at the Church of the Resurrection with Rev. Fr. Brian Gerber to officiate. Spring burial will be at Forest Hill Cemetery in Houghton.

Friends may call at the church from 9:30 until 11 a.m. on Saturday morning before the Mass.

Funeral arrangements are being handled by the ONeill-Dennis Funeral Home in Hancock. To leave online condolences, please go to

Memorials in lieu of flowers may be directed to the Church of the Resurrection in the name of C. Frederick Kekko.