Kemper T. Beasley

July 27, 1919 ‒ September 25, 2008

Marion, Ohio

Kemper T. Beasley, age 89, of Marion, died at home on Thursday, Sept. 25, 2008, after an extended period of declining health.

Kemper was born July 27, 1919 in Portsmouth, Ohio, the youngest in a family of four. Roaming the hills of southern Ohio, its streams, and its riverbeds gave Kemper a lifelong love of the outdoors.

During World War II, he enlisted in the Army and was trained as a Morse code radio operator. Shortly after the Normandy invasion, Kemper was assigned to an aviation construction unit which built forward air strips under battle conditions. This unit was highly mobile and Kemper worked 24/7, often sending and receiving messages on the move in a half-track.

After the war, he returned to Portsmouth and worked with the telephone company doing station installation and repair. Kemper kept up-to-date with changing telephone technology and spent long hours learning automatic switching at the GTE Lucasville switch. In his leisure hours, he took up amateur radio, keeping in contact with fellow radio operators from his old Army unit. He also served as a scoutmaster and a church elder, both at the Second Presbyterian Church in Portsmouth. After the telephone strike of 1956-57, he decided to relocate to Marion, finally moving in 1961.

In Marion, Kemper accepted challenging assignments at the telephone company until he retired at age 60. He was a member of the First Presbyterian Church and held a long time membership in the Marion Amateur Radio Club. Always a generous and kind man, he spent much of his retirement taking care of his mother and later, his sister.

In addition to his parents Janet and George Beasley, Kemper was preceded in death by his sister Nancy Bjorson and oldest brother Bob Plunkett. He is survived by brother George Beasley of Fort Lauderdale, a niece Elaine Goodloe of Fort Lauderdale, nephews George Beasley of Atlanta, Allan Plunkett of Portland, Oregon, and Peter Plunkett of Houston, and all the members of their families.

His family will greet friends from 9 – 11 a.m. on Saturday, October 4, 2008, at the Denzer-Farison-Hottinger & Snyder Funeral Home, 360 E. Center St., Marion, where services celebrating his life will follow immediately at 11:00 a.m. with Rev. J. David Worthen officiating. Graveside burial services will be held on Monday, October 6, 2008, at 11:00 a.m. at the Scioto Burial Park in McDermott, Ohio.

Online condolences may be expressed to his family at