Kenneth L. Payne

Kenneth Lynn Payne, of Lansing, Michigan, passed away unexpectedly on November 1, 2023.  He was born on April 21, 1952, in Montgomery, Alabama to the union of Nathaniel Payne and Patsy M. Young Payne.

After Kenneth graduated from James Madison High School in Rochester, NY, Class of 1970, he continued his educational studies in Chemistry at Monroe Community College, Class of 1974; Organic Chemistry at Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT), Class of 1982.  Kenneth completed his graduate studies with a degree in Chemistry, Polymer Science and Engineering from North Dakota State University, Class of 1984.

After graduating with a degree in the chemical engineering field, Kenneth worked for Eastman Kodak Company, 1970-1982; Ciba Geigy Corporation, 1985-1988; Ciba Specialty Chemicals 1989-1997.  He finished his career as a Regional Manager at Huntsman Advanced Materials in East Lansing, Michigan, and retired in 2012.

Kenneth loved all genres of music and was an awesome jazz drummer in several drum and bugle corps in his early years.  He also shared his love of drumming with many young musicians in the Rochester, NY and Lansing, MI area.

Kenneth was predeceased by his parents. He leaves to cherish his memory, his wife of 37 years, Claudien; daughter Keshunda, sons N’Gai CuZan and Arley Jerome “A.J.”; brothers Michael and Timothy; special Aunt Corine; eight grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; and numerous friends and neighbors.

There will be a memorial service held 12:30 p.m., Saturday, April 27, 2024, at Mt. Zion All Nations Bible Church, 10575 Krepps Rd., Dewitt, MI 48820.

Arrangements are by the Estes-Leadley Greater Lansing Chapel.


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6 Messages to “Kenneth L. Payne

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Richard Rosenthal
November 5, 2023 at 2:57 am

Condolences Claudien and family.

Ken was always encouraging to Stephanie and me and was an ongoing mentor to my wife even after they no longer worked together.

Ken would always keep us up to date with what was going on in his family’s life in his annual Christmas cards/letters. We looked forward to receiving them.

Rest in heaven Brother Ken and thank you for the love you have shown to us over the years. You will be missed.

Richard and Stephanie Rosenthal

Narvella Wright
November 6, 2023 at 1:53 pm

Claudien, I have always appreciated you and Brother Kenny’s kindness.
I’m so very sorry for your loss, and offer my condolences and prayers now and going forth.

Lela Hines Lyons
November 7, 2023 at 1:32 pm

Claudien, children, grandchildren and great grand children,
This is Lela, Michael’s sister. It is with sadness that I send this note to you, such an unexpected loss of your husband, Ken. He made a difference in countless lives given his profession as a chemist. I enjoyed you two at Michael’s and Sophia’s home every time you were there. You both were so nice. He reminded me of Jeffrey Osborne.
Loved ones enter our lives, but the impressions they make on our hearts stay with us a lifetime.
May the Lord comfort you, as only He can do. Claudien, think on the many memories of Ken. That, too, is comforting. The impact of Ken’s life was unique, deep and broad in his love for music and his profession. My heart goes out to you. According to our Lord, we shall see Ken again!!!

Edith Best
November 8, 2023 at 7:47 am

Claudien, I can’t tell you how much my heart hurts. It’s broken, simple and plain. You and Kenny were brother and sister to me from the moment we met. He was the “teacher” that got me through macroecon in graduate school and you helped proof my thesis. You both even attended my graduate ceremony in Mt. Pleasant. God blessed me with you both. Kenny was the 1st person (on behalf of you and the family) to send me a Christmas greeting every year. Something I looked for eagerly and cherished. He was a dedicated member of Mt. Zion All Nations as you were too. I share in your sorrow during this time but I know where Kenny is (absent from the body, present with the Lord (2 Cor 5:8). I also know where he is not and that’s the part that hurts the most. I shall keep you lifted in prayer. Do the same for me please. Thank you for sharing Kenny with me. It is something I’ll hold dear forever.

N'Gai Yawn
November 18, 2023 at 8:20 am

To me this is a real shocker pops. I can’t even believe this. No matter what pops, I know for a fact that you’ll truly be missed. I’ll always keep you in my heart no matter how much I’ll miss you. I’ll always love you dad.

La'Shunda Thomas
April 15, 2024 at 8:22 pm

You are missed, dearly! Thanks for accepting us into your family.


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