D. Kenneth Grimes, 89, veteran, operated diner

May 31, 2004

D. Kenneth "Pappy" Grimes, a World War II combat veteran who formerly operated a diner in Carroll County and served as a New Windsor town councilman, died of heart failure and emphysema Wednesday at his home there. He was 89.

A Carroll native, Mr. Grimes was born in Union Bridge and raised on a farm. He was 4 when his father died in an accident while working at the local Lehigh Cement plant.

Mr. Grimes often rode a horse to school but attended to only the seventh or eighth grade, said his daughter, Ruth Lease of New Windsor. He then worked on the family farm and at a New Windsor restaurant.

In 1934, he married Marie Staub, whom he had met in school.

During the war, Mr. Grimes served in the Army's 17th Infantry Regiment, seeing action on Okinawa. The other soldiers called him "Pappy" because he was a decade or more older than many of them. The nickname stayed with him for the rest of his life.

After the war, he drove a milk truck for Chesapeake Creamery in Baltimore. He also ran a shoe-repair business in New Windsor. In 1961, he and his wife opened Ken-Mar Corner, a diner and soda fountain in New Windsor. At the same time, he drove a school bus. The couple closed the restaurant in the late 1970s.

Mr. Grimes kept about 15 steers at a barn in New Windsor. He sold some and kept others for meat for his family.

Over the years, he was deeply involved in New Windsor affairs. He served on the Town Council and was maintenance supervisor for more than two decades. He also was involved in a number of town social and community organizations, including the volunteer fire department.

Services were held Saturday.

In addition to his wife and daughter, survivors include three grandchildren and five great-grandchildren. His son, Albert Grimes, died in 1996.

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