July 10, 2009
He was the beloved husband of Tone Duncan, widower of Fujiko Miyamoto and father to their sons Koje and Kenji Kellen. He leaves two brothers George of Pensacola and Paul of Medford, Ma and numerous nephews and nieces. He was retired Director of the Manufacturers Council of Charlotte, NC Chamber of Commerce. He served as a missionary in Japan for the Oblataes of Mary Immaculate from 1960 to 1965. He was a Professor at Osaka City University where he met Fujiko. He returned to the US in 1972 and worked in the advertising community before founding Kellen International with his wife in 1984 which he closed after her untimely death in 1995. He later married Tone Duncan. After retirement he did volunteer work for Hospice, SHIIP and Relay For Life.
Mr. Kellen, of Lincolnton, formerly of Charlotte, was 76 when the music stopped. His eight year dance with cancer ended on July 10, 2009. Aided by surgery, chemo and radiation he enjoyed life to the fullest, maintaining optimism and cheer all the way.
A memorial service will be held on October 24, 2009 at 3:00 p.m. at Vesuvius Vineyards, 6310 Vesuvius Furnace Road, Iron Station, NC 28080.
A Bostonian by birth he lived long stretches in DC and Japan before settling in Charlotte. During his ten year stay in Japan he married Fujiko Miyamoto and the couple had two sons, Koji and Kenji.
In his 36 years here, he worked on Charlotte's marvelous growth from small town wanna-be to thriving big city. He was International Marketing Manager for Homelite, a partner in Boyd Kellen & Thomas, headed U.S. marketing for Nippon Fine Machinery, formed Kellen & Associates with his late, first wife, and capped his career with his best loved job, heading the Manufacturers Council of the Charlotte Chamber.
He served the community as Chair of the Nevins, Inc. and Chamber's International Action Council boards, and on the boards of the Charlotte Foreign Trade Zone, United Way Economic Independence Council, North Carolina Apprentice Advisory Board and Business Marketing Association. After retirement he did volunteer work for Hospice, SHIIP and Relay For Life.
His family includes his beloved and caring wife, Tone Kotani Duncan of Lincolnton; sons, Joseph Koji and Francis Kenji, both of Charlotte; stepson, John Duncan and wife Tracy, and fabulous grandsons, Zachary Avery and Gabriel Duncan, all of Lincolnton; and brothers, George and wife Terry Kellen of Pensacola and Paul and wife Jean Kellen of Boston.
Memorials may be made to Hospice of Lincoln County at 107 N. Cedar St., Lincolnton, N.C. 28092.