Dr. William Kennedy Upham, a long-time resident of Conway, Arkansas, passed away July 26, 2020, at the age of 89. Ken and his wife, Joy, moved to Austin, Texas, about a year ago to be closer to family.
William Kennedy Upham was born Oct. 8, 1930, in St. Pete Beach, Florida, to William Woodbridge Upham and Rebecca (Becky) Brown Upham. Ken married Joy Hickman Upham in 1953. In their early years he was an ordained Presbyterian pastor in Miami, Florida at the Church of the Master. Later he went on to get a PhD in Sociology from the University of Florida. In the mid 60s Ken and Joy moved to College Station, Texas, where Ken taught Sociology at Texas A&M University. In the mid 70s they had the opportunity to move to Conway, Arkansas, where he could teach full-time at the University of Central Arkansas. This was most fulfilling, as he was able to help undergraduate and graduate students better understand more about relationships at home and in the community. Ken remained involved with his church by filling in for vacationing pastors by delivering sermons and conducting weddings, hospital visits, and funerals. Ken also served the local community by helping to increase the amount of low-income housing in Conway and working to improve the life of the elderly and needy.
Ken was preceded in death by his parents, William Woodbridge Upham and Rebecca Becky Brown Upham. He is survived by his loving wife of 67 years, Joy Hickman Upham; his sisters, Natalie Roberts and Mary Ann Will; his sons, Bruce D. Upham and Steve K. Upham; and grandchildren, Joshua Upham, Aaron Upham, Micah Upham, Taylor Upham, and Krisynda Collins, as well as great-grandchildren Bailey Whittaker and Blair Whittaker.
Funeral plans are currently undecided. In lieu of flowers, please direct a gift in memory of Ken Upham to Grace Presbyterian Church, 1010 Hogan Lane, Conway, Arkansas 72034.
Condolences may be sent to: www.harrellfuneral homes.com.