James Kenneth Ken Bartlett
James Kenneth "Ken" Bartlett passed away March 12, 2014 in Ashland, Ore. Ken was born in Lynden, Wash. February 2, 1925 to James Pierce and Hazel Harmelink Bartlett.
The family moved to Grants Pass in 1930 where they stayed until moving to Salem in 1941.
After graduation from Salem High School, Ken entered the military for World War II service. He was awarded the Combat Infantry Badge and Bronze Star for service in the European
Theater of Operations. Immediately after the surrender of Germany his unit returned to the United States and reassembled for the planned invasion of mainland Japan. Organized combat ceased after the atomic bombs were dropped, but Ken remained on duty for several months in the Philippine Islands. Shortly after discharge he entered the Veterans Administration hospital in Portland for extended treatment of an unresolved medical problem.
In the fall of 1946 Ken enrolled at Willamette University where he met and courted Patricia Curtis, a student recently arrived from New York, who became his wife in 1948. The BS degree in chemistry was awarded in 1949 and Ken went on to Stanford University to pursue graduate studies. Ken served in the Army Reserve during the Korean War but resigned his commission soon after hostilities ceased. The birth of their only child, Nancy, in 1953, brought a slowdown in degree progress while Ken taught full time at the University of Santa Clara. Work for the PhD degree in analytical chemistry was completed at Stanford the following summer and the family moved to Long Beach, Calif. where Ken held a position on the faculty of the new state college. Ken's youth in rural southern Oregon did not prepare him well to enjoy life in the Los Angeles basin and he soon looked elsewhere. It was his good fortune that Southern Oregon College of Education (now SOU) was growing and in need of help on the chemistry faculty.
In 1956 the Bartlett family moved to Ashland, a town that they soon grew to love and in which they have resided to the present time. Ken served on a variety of institutional and statewide committees and organizations, was advisor to pre-dental and pre-medical students, and for several years acted as Chemistry Department Chair until his retirement in 1986. The family
attended First Presbyterian Church where Ken served as an Elder.
Survivors are his wife of 65 years, Patricia; daughter, Nancy Ehlers (husband Jerry);
granddaughter, Hannah Ehlers all of Eugene, Ore.; grandson, Derek Ehlers of Portland, Ore.; and brother, Eugene Bartlett of Eugene, Ore. His parents, sister, Marguerite, younger brother,
Johnny, and first grandchild, Katie, preceded him in death.
He will be missed by our family and a huge number of extended family and friends who were lucky enough to know him. He was an exceptional person and I am truly blessed by having had him as my father.
We will have a memorial service this summer at our cabin at Lake of the Woods.
In honor of my father, contributions can be made to the Southern Oregon University
Foundation Chemistry Scholarship program.