Kenneth Dako

Kenneth A. Dako

Sunday, September 6th, 1936 - Saturday, April 3rd, 2021
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Lt Colonel (Rtd) Kenneth Dako was born in Begoro, Ghana in the Eastern Region, on September 6th ,1936 to Mr. Emmanuel Victor Collins Dako (General Manager of Presbyterians Schools) and Mary Oforiwaa Dako.

He attended primary school in Kwahu Abetifi and continued to middle school in Koforidua. After his middle school education, he attended Prempeh College in Kumasi, where he was one of the second batch of students to attend the newly opened school from 1952-1955. He did some public school teaching in Obuasi in the Ashanti region before enrolling for an X-ray Technician course through the Ministry of Health in Accra. Upon completion of this course, he was posted to the Bolgatanga Hospital in the north. Bolgatanga is where he picked up lawn tennis and he played it throughout his years in the army and beyond. After a few years at Bolgatanga, He returned to Accra and worked at the Ministry of Health while contemplating his next move. He was to further his studies in Europe, upon receiving a scholarship but his father advised him to stay in Ghana and let his late older brother go instead. Being an obedient son, he listened to his father. Looking to make his next move, he considered different options, but the army fulfilled all he was looking for in an education and career. How could such a gentle soul be a soldier, but that's just what he did. He joined the army in 1963 and attended Staff College at the Ghana Military Academy. He was Platoon Commander at 4 Battalion of Infantry from September 1963 - November 1966. While he was a Platoon Commander, he served as an ADC (Aide de Camp) to Sierra Leone Prime Minister at the Organization of African Union (OAU) conference in Ghana (1965) . He was promoted to Unit Mortar Officer 4 Battalion of Infantry from November 1966 - November 1967. From January 1968 - May 1971 he was an Admin Officer at 1 Field Ambulance, and held the same title at Medical Battalion from May to September 1971.

He became the Acting Commanding Officer at 1 Field Ambulance from December 1973 - August 1974. He then went to the Ministry of Defense, working at Manpower Administration from March 1976 to December 1977. His next assignment was as a Personnel Staff Officer at the Ministry of Defense from March to April 1978. From April 1978 to January 1979, he was Deputy Director of Medical Services Administration and Organization.

After completing courses in accounting, audit procedures and armed forces pay service, he was sent to Fort Benjamin Harrison in Indiana USA from June-December 1977 to further his knowledge of what it took to be a modern soldier. His next stop was Ghana Armed Forces Defense College from January - April 1979. He continued on to Senior Staff College of Armed Forces Command from April 1980 to May 1981. From May to November 1985 he was Senior Staff Officer at Ghana Battalion 24 United Nations interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL), where he served alongside soldiers from Fiji, Ireland, France, China and several other countries. Upon returning to Ghana he became Deputy Director of Operations (Procurement). He then moved on to become the Acting Director of Administration at Armed Forces Headquarters from September 1986 to January 1987 and his final assignment was Director of Administration or (D. Admin) from July 1987 to November 1987. This job came with a lot of power and influence. He once shared with his children that when there was fuel shortage in Ghana, he got a phone call seeking his approval to refill the tank of a very high ranking military person. Such was the scope and accountability that the job came with. In spite of this influence, his gentle soul never abused it but rather successfully managed it until he hung up his boots. He worked closely with General Quainoo who was the Chief of Defense Staff (CDS) and Lt General Henry B. Smith who was the Chief of Army Staff, and also became Minister of Defence and later, Ghana Ambassador to the United States. He was honourably discharged on 15th November 1987.

After retirement, he went to Israel to be with his wife and children. The post-secondary education of his children in the USA meant he had to join them to continue to be the guiding light that he always was. He dedicated himself to remaining available to his family and ensuring that his children were guided every step of the way through every single milestone. He always had a love for the church and for helping people, and eventually, the opportunity came when he met Mr. John Moritz of Hearts of the Father Outreach. Through his affiliation with Hearts of the Father, he was able to help lots of marginalized women and children not just in the States but in many nations across the world. With his vast experiences the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) came calling and he accepted a position as Logistics Officer where he was able to allocate funds and direct it to urgent needs of refugees in Afghanistan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. No matter where he went, he couldn't get away from serving others.

He is survived by his wife, four sons, two daughters, 12 grandchildren, 3 brothers and several nieces, nephews and extended family. He always made himself available to his family whenever possible and always showed the type of kindness , calmness and love that everyone who knew him experienced. He was always a shoulder to cry on, had an ear to listen, and a strong assuring voice to advise us through any difficulty we experienced. We cannot emphasize enough how often he talked about helping people and to follow the example of Christ. He always emphasized the need to worship God in spirit and in truth (John 4:24.). Like his father, he loved playing his favorite hymns on the piano and especially at family gatherings, where he also enjoyed when we sang along and especially, when his grandchildren would huddle around to listen and sing with him. Dad's family responsibilities and commitments extended beyond the boundaries of just his immediate family. As head (Abusuapanyin) of the Asona family clan, he worked closely with all his family, to ensure and extend leadership and purposeful direction, not only within the parameters of the family but also beyond the family. His association with the Hearts of the Father Outreach, headed by Mr John and Libby Moritz, particularly helping, educating, building schools, and changing the lives of children and their families across the nations of the world, became part of the structural framework of his mentality in approaching his responsibility to the family. In truth, he was more like a Christian missionary with the rightful attitude of engaging and extending his resources, advice, wisdom, and influence to just about anybody that was privileged to meet him. His non judgmental attitude, as well as his broad trademark smile became his signature gift, shared by everyone who encountered him. He spent the last three years in New Jersey surrounded by his children and their families. He was always thankful to God that the pandemic never affected him or his family. He had plans to return to Ghana to "put things in place" as he said but he was called to glory on April 3, 2021.
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Service Details

  • Visitation

    Friday, May 7th, 2021 | 10:00am - 12:00pm
    Friday, May 7th, 2021 10:00am - 12:00pm
  • Service

    Friday, May 7th, 2021 | 12:00pm
    Friday, May 7th, 2021 12:00pm
    Gleason Funeral Home
    1360 Hamilton Street
    SOMERSET, NJ 08873
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Interment

    private, NJ

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