Obituaries » Kenneth L. Small

Kenneth L. Small

December 10, 1930

U.S. Veteran

Burial Date January 3, 2022

Obituary Viewed 277 times

Kenneth L. Small


With all the submerging done during 20 years of submarine service in the United States Navy, Kenneth

Lynn Small is now soaring up to Heaven after passing away on Jan. 3, 2022 in the company of his loving wife Evelyn.

This Nebraska farm boy, was born to Willard and Alice Small in North Platte, NE. on December 10, 1930.

Upon his biological father’s demise when Ken was eight years old, he was then raised by his beloved

stepfather, George Kelso. Ken is pre-deceased by all three parents, as well as his father and mother in-

law, Rafool Anthony and Zahia Antar Karam.

-Ken entered the U.S. Navy in 1950. During his 20-year career, he proudly served aboard the submarines,

Sea Devil; Redfin; Tench and as COB aboard Skate, in addition to shore duty stations. Following the

receipt of awards for his service in the Navy, he retired as MCPO in1970 and subsequently was inducted

into the HOLLAND Club, an exclusive group within the U.S. Submarine Veterans Organization, (SUBVETS),

for having been qualified as a submariner for 50 years. He also was cited for being a member of the Fleet

Reserve Association for 50 years.

His real adventure began when he married his beloved Philadelphia city girl, Evelyn “Ev” Karam, in 1956.

During his naval career aboard diesel and nuclear submarines, it was filled with stops in foreign ports, a

trip under the North Pole, and, as his grandkids learned – a ride in a jet fighter from a base down South so

he could get home to mom.

Ken’s character and integrity were evidenced by the strong friendships he retained over his entire life.

Even up through 2013 Ken and Ev participated in formulating more than 11 submarine reunions ranging

from the old diesel boat Redfin (SS-272) days up through the nuclear sub, Skate (SSN-578). It wasn’t just

about Navy pride; it was about the bonds he formed and the life-style he lived that had people wanting to

be near him. Ken was extremely proud serving his country aboard submarines and set a good example

for the younger seamen that he encountered.

Upon retiring from the U.S. Navy, he enjoyed some shorter jobs selling insurance for Mutual of Omaha,

and piloting boats for the Underwater Sound Lab until he hit his stride once again as a Senior Operator at

Millstone Unit 2 Nuclear Power plant in Waterford, CT. His passion and tenure at Millstone fueled an

additional suite of long-term friendships.

These were the visible traits that co-workers saw of Ken. Those same characteristics he brought home to

his family as a strong provider, a mentor to his son, Anthony, and a lifelong care-giver for his

developmentally disabled daughter, Alicia Mari Small.

Alongside Ev, he was a strong advocate for the less fortunate and helped found organizations such as the

Southeastern CT Association for the Retarded (SCAR), Developmental Disabilities Assn., as well as to help

open many group homes in the area. He served as President for many years in those organizations

Always a strong advocate for client needs he refused to just abandon his daughter and strived until the

very end to make situations better for Alicia and other developmentally disabled people.

Over the course of his life, this humble and gentle farm boy built a proud career and family. He leaves a

loving legacy of many people who will badly miss him and look to one day join with him again in heaven. Long time communicants of St. Matthias Church since 1977, Ken is survived by his loving wife of nearly 66 years of marriage, Evelyn (Karam) Small, his daughter, Alicia Mari Small, his son Anthony Gerard and wife Ana Small, and his grandchildren, Miguel and Bea Asuncion. Other survivors include brother-in-law, John Norman (Kathleen) Karam; Alfred Paul (Nancy) Karam, sister in-law Darlene Small; and numerous nephews, nieces and cousins throughout the country. There is no viewing schedule, but relatives and friends are welcome to attend a Mass of Christian Burial on Saturday at 10 am in St. Matthias Church, 317 Chesterfield Rd., East Lyme. Entombment to follow in St. Mary Cemetery Mausoleum , with military honors. Donations in his memory may be made to the Camp Harkness Foundation, 301 Great Neck Rd. Waterford, Ct 06385. The Impellitteri-Malia Funeral Home, 84 Montauk Ave. New London, has been entrusted with his care.


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