Lookout Ken Van Cise Passes
It is with sadness and a profound sense of personal loss that I must report the passing of Fire Lookout Ken Van Cise, who died quietly — of heart failure — in his sleep on the night of Tuesday, August 18. Ken was my best friend of 35 years and the best man at my recent wedding.
Throughout the course of our long friendship, we spent much time exploring the wilderness during countless hiking, backpacking and camping expeditions. When we joined the ANFFLA a couple of years ago, we both felt that we had found a way to give back. Although Ken was a Lookout for less than three years, I know he enjoyed the work and took pride in doing it well. He especially liked the chance to overnight in the cab and cook hearty, carbohydrate-soaked meals for himself and his fellow lookouts.
Services for Ken will be held at 1 p.m. Thursday, August 27, at the Rainbow Chapel at Rose Hills Memorial Park in Whittier. Ken loved animals, and rescued dozens of displaced, orphaned or injured creatures, bringing many of them to the Wildlife Waystation, where he became well-known. Donations made in his memory to the Waystation, SPCA, Humane Society and/or the ANFFLA would all be appreciated and a fitting tribute to Ken.
He will be missed on our Mountain.
— Richard Krzyzanowski
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