Kenneth Kyker

Published 11:38 am Monday, November 8, 2021

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“I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith.” 2 Timothy 4:7
Born: October 30th, 1937
Moved to Heaven: November 5th, 2021
Kenneth was the son of the late Albert Oscar Kyker and Nellie Simmons Kyker.
Those left to cherish his memory are:
The love of his life, his soulmate, and his ministry partner, Carol Marie Conley Kyker.
They have been married since June 3, 1961 and have served God faithfully together in many local churches for 52+ years.
Daughter Kathy Thompson and husband Scott.
Daughter Kim Garland and husband Paul.
Five grandsons: Ben Thompson and wife Ashley, Jacob Thompson and wife Catherine, Luke Thompson and wife Aspen, Seth Garland and girlfriend Lani, and Noah Garland.
Great-grandchildren: Ella, Lily, Weston, Jack, Solomon, Silas, and awaiting the soon arrival of Cleo and Emery Thompson.
Sister: Carolyn Slagle and husband Bobby.
Sister-in-law: Elaine Emmert and husband Bobby.
Nephews: Jody Lewis and Mark Slagle.
One of Ken’s favorite sayings was that “God is good — ALL the time.” His life was dedicated in service to the Lord and his family. He gave his life to Christ in June 1948, and became an ordained minister of the gospel in 1965. He loved serving the local church and encouraging pastors.
Ken’s love for others and passion for sharing the Gospel were always evident in his five decades of ministry. Ken embarked on international mission trips, pastored seven churches, wrote and preached thousands of sermons, led over 150 revivals, officiated hundreds of weddings and 700 funerals, knocked on doors in the community each week to invite neighbors to church, and spent countless hours counseling and praying for others. Ken was always a friend to anyone he met, and he was never too busy for late-night hospital visits with families in need of hope — with his warm, comforting smile and love for Christ shining through every moment of his ministry.
Since 2017, Kenneth served as pastor Emeritus at Antioch Baptist Church. He and Carol also attended the Drive-In Church at University Parkway Church. The highlight of his life was sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ. He also loved spending time with his family. Family parties and visits with his grandchildren brought him so much joy. He loved being called “Pap!”
Ken believed in the absolute inerrancy and authority of God’s Word in every aspect of life, and set an incredible Christian example for his family.
If Ken met you, he’d tell you about what a wonderful wife God had blessed him with for sixty years. He’d brag about the two godly Christian daughters they raised, and tell you all about his grandchildren and great-grandchildren he was always so proud of. But most important of all, he would tell you about His Savior, Jesus Christ, who came to Earth 2,000 years ago to live a perfect life and die on a cross, paying for the sins of all those who put their trust in Him for salvation. Ken would share that it’s by God’s grace alone that we are saved, through faith — and not of works (Ephesians 2:8-9). Ken would speak of John 14:6, where Jesus declares that He is the only way anyone can be made right with God. Ken would lovingly warn of God’s very real judgment for those who reject this amazing offer of kindness (John 3:16), and Ken would plead with you to think on the love, mercy, and holiness of God, and turn to God in repentance and faith for the forgiveness of your sins. Then he’d encourage you to share this great gift of salvation with others, just as Jesus instructed (Matt. 28:18-20).
Beginning ministry in 1965, he pastored Bethel Baptist Church, Big Springs Baptist Church, and Fairview Baptist Church in the Watauga Association of Churches. He pastored Antioch Baptist Church, Skyline Heights Baptist Church, Reservoir Road Baptist Church, and Boones Creek Baptist Church in the Holston Baptist Association of Churches.
Kenneth was a 1955 graduate of Lamar High School and graduated from Steed College of Technology in 1957 with a degree in accounting. He served in the U.S. Army (Active Duty and Reserve) Honorable Discharge. He worked as an accountant with ETWNC for 13 years before beginning full-time ministry. He was a graduate of Carson-Newman Summer School. He graduated in the first class of Holston Baptist Bible Institute. He also completed a degree in Pastoral Ministries through SBC Seminary Extension. He was trained and led many classes in FAITH Sunday School Evangelism Strategies and Masterlife. He participated in Billy Graham School of Evangelism and loved being a part of the Billy Graham TVTM phone ministry. He was a student of God’s Word. He studied, memorized, and loved sharing the powerful truths from the Bible to encourage and bring hope and eternal life to others.
His family would like to say a special thank you to Amedisys Hospice, especially Ashley Elledge and Linda Byrd, who served our family so well during this time.
Kenneth Kyker touched thousands of lives throughout his 84 years on earth, and his bold witness and gentle spirit left a legacy that will live on for generations. Ken lived for what mattered. Ken lived for eternity. How about you?
If you were blessed to know Kenneth and have a story or a special memory of him, our family would love to hear it. Please feel free to send us your story or memory by e-mail. You can reach Kathy at or Kim at
A Celebration of Life Worship Service was held on Sunday evening, November 7, at Antioch Baptist Church from 4 to 7 p.m. with the funeral at 7 p.m. The event was livestreamed and may be viewed by visiting @antiochjctn on Facebook. At the service, containers were available for memorial donations for two of Kenneth’s favorite ministries, Samaritan’s Purse (P.O. Box 3000, Boone, NC 28607) and St. Jude Children’s Hospital (262 Danny Thomas Place, Memphis, TN 38105.) The graveside service will be held on Monday, November 8, at 1 p.m. at New Victory Baptist Church Cemetery. All that wish to attend are asked to meet at the cemetery no later than 12:50 p.m. Pallbearers will be Kenneth’s grandsons. Honorary pallbearers will be David Keys, Herman Payne, Denver King, J.C. Milhorn, Bobby Slagle and Bobby Emmert
This obituary was lovingly written by family.
Memories and condolences may be shared at
Tetrick Funeral Services, 3001 Peoples Street Johnson City, TN 37604 (423-610-7171), is honored to serve the Kyker Family.

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