Arthur “Ken” Ireland, 93, of North Port, Fla., passed away Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2013.
He was born June 25, 1919 in Trenton, N.J., to Major Ernest Ireland and Mame Elizabeth Ireland.
Ken attended the Trenton school system and graduated in 1937, lettered in several sports and was President of the Wood Shop Club the same year. He joined a Boy Scout Mounted Troop and after his allotted time with that unit he joined the New Jersey National Guard in 1940, which was a horse drawn field artillery unit. The unit was called up to Federal Service in 1941. While stationed in Ft. Bragg he was sent to Ft. Sill, where he qualified as an instructor in equitation and as a horse trainer. Taking note of the situation in Europe, he applied for acceptance in pilot training. Ken graduated in 1943, as a pilot of multi-engine aircraft and was assigned to the 467th Bomb Group with the B-24 a four-engine heavy bomber. The group was eventually sent to England where he flew on 35 combat missions, some were a little on the rough side. He was separated from the service in 1945, and enlisted in the U.S. National Guard as an army aviator flying small single-engine aircraft. As a Captain he became Division Air Officer for Division Artillery. Because of work he resigned from the National Guard after about 23 years of service and is now retired from the military. Ken Ireland met and married Irene F. Watson in 1947; they were married for 63 years. Irene passed away in January of 2012. During their married years, Irene was employed by the Trenton Trust Company and Ken was self-employed for ten years as the owner of Good Food Distributors, a wholesale food distributor and then by various companies in the electronics industry as a salesman and then as a sales manager for the New England States. Ken and Irene retired to Florida in 1981, and have resided in the North Port area ever since.
Arrangements are with National Cremation society of Port Charlotte, FL.