In Memory of



Obituary for Robert Kinney

On December 28, 2019, Robert Grael Kinney, 92, went to be with his Lord, peacefully and surrounded by family. He was born on March 7, 1927 in Oak Park Illinois to the late Elmer H. Kinney and Grace Mae Holt Kinney. He grew up in Oak Park where he was an Eagle Scout. He served in the Navy during WWII, graduated from Iowa State University, and then joined his father at Kinney Electrical Manufacturing Company in Elgin, IL. Through his tireless dedication to quality and impeccable integrity, his company grew to international outreach.

Christ was the centerpiece of his life. While he enjoyed many accomplishments, the hallmark of his character was a devotion to his Savior. The light of Jesus shined through his love and service to others. His zeal was for missions, at home and abroad, as he supported numerous missions and missionaries throughout his life. He was a founding member of Grace Evangelical Church in Elgin, Illinois and helped build the physical building as well as its mission and congregation. He served the church for decades in numerous roles such as deacon, elder, Sunday School teacher, and preaching in the pulpit on occasion. He also served Pacific Garden Mission for the homeless and downtrodden in Chicago as a volunteer and board member.

His life's passion was the children of the world served by Compassion International. He served Compassion for 30 years, fifteen as board chair, traveling the world on their behalf to every continent except Antarctica. It was not to the glitzy places that he traveled but to the places of great need--the kind of places you get to by hours-long canoe rides or single engine planes landing in cow pastures.

After retiring and moving to Arizona in 1995, he served at Trinity Bible Church, as well as a thrift shop where he ministered to the poor and homeless. He also joined the Sun City West Posse where he served with distinction for 20 years, retiring only when the needs of his wife required it.

As a young man he enjoyed playing football. He was an avid and excellent swimmer and water skier. At family gatherings and with friends, he was the practical joker who brought laughter to all. He always loved gardening and enjoyed harvesting oranges and grapefruits in Arizona. In his later years he became a woodworker, making hundreds of items for others. In his later years, he devoted himself to genealogy, tracing both sides of the family back hundreds of years, an interest he shared with his grandson.

He was a devoted husband, father, and grandfather who prioritized love for family, duty, and responsibility over himself as he selflessly served others, particularly his wife suffering from Alzheimer's Disease.

He is survived by his wife, Marilyn, of 67 years; three children, Janet Lynn Kinney Parker (John) of Murrieta, CA, Robert Bruce Kinney (Kim) of Kannapolis, NC, and Beth Allison Kinney Behm (Rodney) of Aurora, CO; his sister Lois Kinney Jung of Cedarburg, WI; 7 grandchildren; 6 great grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews.

Memorial service Saturday, February 8, 12:30pm at Grace Evangelical Church 1800 Bowes Road, Elgin. In lieu of flowers, memorials be given in his memory to Compassion International, 12290 Voyager Parkway, Colorado Springs, CO, 80921. Online condolences may be left at