Kenneth K. “Kenny” Harris was born in Chicago, Illinois, on February 3, 1959. Kenny was sworn in as a firefighter of the Oak Park Fire Department on January 4, 1988. Firefighter/Paramedic Harris served the Village of Oak Park for 28 years.
Kenny was a committed father of five children who received the lion’s share of his attention. He loved bowling and spent much of his free time coaching Little League baseball and umpiring. Kenny was dedicated to his neighborhood, in an effort to make things better for his family and his community. These efforts attest to his commitment of service to others and his huge heart.
He was a senior member of the fire department who was always willing to help new members learn complicated skills that he acquired through his many years of dedicated service. Kenny was active in the union (Local 95) and helped organize charity events, participated in fundraising efforts, and provided any help that was asked of him. Kenneth Harris was a great firefighter and an even better man. He will be sorely missed by all those whose lives he touched.
Firefighter/Paramedic Harris was at home following a 24-hour shift which included calls for a vehicle fire, an activated alarm, and multiple medical calls. After shoveling snow in the evening, he went to his bedroom, where he was found unresponsive by his family 10-15 minutes later. Despite resuscitation efforts, he was pronounced dead at the hospital. He was 56 years old.
Kenny is the beloved son of Joan and the late James Harris. He is survived by his devoted wife, Shirley (nee Chesny), and his five children, Heather (James) Nieves, Eric, Megan (Matthew) Sapikas, Adam, and Isaac. He was also the proud grandfather of Lily, Amelia, Aiden, Scarlett, and Kendra.