Obituary: Kenneth Green
Kenneth Alden Green, a former resident of Claremont, died on May 30, 2016 in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. He was 92.
He was born on March 28, 1924 in Sacramento to the Reverend Chester E. Green and Wenonah Davis Green. He was educated in Redlands, graduating from Redlands High School in 1948.
Mr. Green was in the US Army during World War II in a medical unit, serving in the China-Burma-India Theater. Upon his return from the war, he married Kathryn Marti on June 23, 1946 in Redlands, in a ceremony officiated by Mr. Green’s father. The couple moved to northern California, where he continued his education at the University of California, Berkeley and earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology in 1948 and a Masters of Social Work in 1950.
Returning to southern California, Mr. Green began his counseling career at the Sierra Madre Lodge for Alcoholism and the Family Counseling Service of Los Angeles. He then served seven years as an assistant supervisor of the Los Angeles County Conciliation Court. In 1965, he joined the faculty of California Polytechnic State University, Pomona as coordinator of the social service program and was later appointed dean of counseling and testing. Mr. Green authored and taught the Parent Effectiveness Training Program for the national YMCA.
Ken believed all relationships are improved by self-examination. In 1979, noted journalist and fellow Claremont resident Louie Robinson interviewed him for an Ebony magazine article, “How to Cope with People You Dislike.”
“It’s been said that we love someone because of how they make us feel, but I think we also dislike people because of how they make us feel,” Mr. Green noted. He urged readers to look for the root of their aversion, particularly when the person in question lacks any obvious odious qualities. For example, you might feel inept around someone because they are so socially graceful.
“In counseling, when people confront why they don’t like a person they frequently come to terms with their own discomfort,” he said. “Rather than evaluating or making a judgment about the other person, they realize the real problem lies with themselves.”
After retirement from Cal Poly, Mr. Green directed a peer counseling program at Claremont Community Senior Services. He joined the Senior Biking Club and the Senior Computer Club. An avid birdwatcher, he was a member of the Pomona Valley chapter of the National Audubon Society. In 2006, Ken and Kathryn moved to Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. He was an enthusiastic golfer, playing at age 90 in a Coeur d’Alene league and with family members.
He is survived by his wife of 70 years, Kathryn Marti Green; daughters Susan Green of Charlotte, North Carolina and Nancy Harper of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho; daughter and son-in-law, Patty and Joe Bordelon of Coeur d’Alene; grandson Matt Coopersmith of Portland, Oregon; granddaughters Renee and Andrea Bordelon of Coeur d’Alene and Leslie Coopersmith of Twin Falls, Idaho; and great-grandchildren Mikayla, Sarah and Jakob Adams of Twin Falls, Idaho.
A family gathering to celebrate Ken’s life will be held at a later date. Interment will be at Hillside Memorial Cemetery in Redlands.