Cover photo for Kenneth James Thetford's Obituary
Kenneth James Thetford Profile Photo

Kenneth James Thetford

June 13, 1943 — March 21, 2024

Kenneth James Thetford

Kenneth James Thetford, 80, passed away on Thursday, March 21, 2024 at Graham Oaks Care Center, following a long struggle with Alzheimer’s disease.  Funeral will be held on Good Friday, March 29, 2024 at 11:00 am at First Presbyterian Church, Graham with the Reverend D.C. Adams. Burial will follow at Pioneer Cemetery where Kenneth will be buried, next to his first wife, Sherrie. Pallbearers will be Grandsons: Chase, Colton, and Garrison Thetford and Grandson-in-law Mason Mays.

Beloved father, grandfather and husband, Ken lived the majority of his life in Graham. Kenneth and his twin brother, Dennis, were born in Graham on June 13, 1943, sons of Betty June Brown Thetford and Ira L. “Buck” Thetford. Kenneth grew up attending First Baptist Church with his family and was baptized as a youth by the Reverend Hubert Foust. From a young age, Kenneth loved all aspects of sports. From collecting baseball cards to Little League Baseball, Kenneth lived and breathed sports. He excelled in football, basketball, baseball, and track. He never lost his admiration for his Junior High School Coach JD Burke and was instrumental in establishing a scholarship in his memory. Playing for the Dogies and the Graham Steers were highlights for him growing up.  He played quarterback and was captain of the Steers earning an athletic scholarship to play football at TCU where he was moved to halfback. Kenneth graduated from Graham High School, Class of 1961, and was the Senior Class Favorite that year. Kenneth and his high school sweetheart, Sherrie Sims, were married March 22, 1969 In Greenville, Texas. They, too, had twin sons, James Robert “Robb” and Kenneth Todd. Over the years, Kenneth invested in several restaurants including a very popular pizza parlor located near the TCU Campus and the Toro Club at Possum Kingdom Lake. He was also engaged in oil field sales over the years, but his favorite occupation was the search for vintage Coca-Cola Bottling machines with his Son, Robb. They would refurbish and sell the restored Coca-Cola machines over the range of several states. Kenneth served in the Texas National Guard. His beloved Wife, Sherrie, died in 2005 after 36 years of marriage. In 2009 Kenneth and Jo Ann Geurin Pettus were married by the Reverend Randy Branson at The Ashton Hotel, Fort Worth, Texas. They renewed their vows at Mo-Ranch Presbyterian Assembly, Hunt, Texas in 2015 with the Reverend Dr. Dan Sebesta, Minister Emeritus of First Presbyterian Church, Graham. Kenneth was a member of First Presbyterian Church, Graham. Over the years, Kenneth’s interests have included crappie fishing at Lake Graham, antique shopping and golf at Graham Country Club, where he was recorded having a hole-in-one. Kenneth was extremely dedicated supporting Robb and Todd in all their sports in Graham as well as the grandchildren.

Ken is survived by his wife, Jo Ann; son, Robb and wife, Maggie of Amarillo; son, Todd and wife, Laura of New Braunfels; grandchildren, Madison Thetford Mays and husband, Mason Mays, and Chase, Colton, and Garrison Thetford; sister, Judy Sims and husband Mike of Weatherford; brother, Mike Thetford and wife Roseanne; and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins. Extended family members include Garrett Pettus and wife, Julie, and children, Geurin and Jensen Pettus and Wyatt Pettus and wife, Kristina and children, Olivia, Wyatt Zachary and Ella Pettus. Kenneth was preceded in death by his parents, Betty and “Buck” Thetford; twin brother, Dennis Thetford; wife, Sherrie Sims Thetford, and nephew, Bradley Thetford.

Those desiring to honor Kenneth’s memory with a memorial might consider the JD Burke Scholarship (501c) for college tuition c/o Phil Denny PO Box 1645 Graham, TX 76450 or charity of your choice. The Family expresses appreciation for the care of Kenneth to Dr. Ryan Easterling, MD; the Sycamore Memory Care of Amarillo; Graham Oaks Care Center and Beyond Faith Hospice.

To send flowers to the family in memory of Kenneth James Thetford, please visit our flower store.

Past Services

Funeral Service

Friday, March 29, 2024

Starts at 11:00 am (Central time)

First Presbyterian Church

1400 Randy Drive, Graham, TX 76450

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Burial

Friday, March 29, 2024

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