Clutch, Rally, Classic.

Kenneth James Nemetz of The Woodlands, TX passed away peacefully on Tuesday, July 24th in Galveston, TX surrounded by loved ones.

Ken was born on June 27th, 1961 to loving parents George and Anita Nemetz in Teaneck, New Jersey but spent the majority of his childhood in Conroe, Texas where he and his 5 siblings raised some hell and took River Plantation by storm. He attended Conroe High School where he played basketball.

After earning a business degree from The University of Maryland, he returned to Texas, finally traded that Yankees cap for an Astros one, and never looked back.

He was a protective, loyal, and fun-loving "Daddio" to his three daughters, and an extremely proud and smitten "Papa K" to five adorable grandchildren. His family will miss his punny jokes, his big bear hugs, and his homemade Texas chili.

Ken truly loved life and lived his to the fullest. He liked to surround himself with good, fun-loving people, and he loved a good party. Some of the mottos he lived by (and regularly proclaimed aloud) include "The more the merrier," "Go big or go home," and "Take it easy." He was a jokester who loved making his friends laugh while bonding over a round of golf, country music, or just about any game out there imaginable. He danced through life with a carefree attitude that most only dream about, and even to the very end he never lost his optimism, fearlessness, or sense of humor.

He was preceded in death by parents, George and Anita Nemetz. His spirit will be carried on by daughters, Jessica Swearingen, Malori Pearson and Aundrea Nemetz; sons-in-law, Brendon Swearingen and Regan Pearson; sisters, Cheryl Baratta, Andrea Nemetz, Eileen Holderman and Linda Ruff; brother, George Nemetz; sister-in-law, Nancy Nemetz; brother-in-law, Steve Ruff; grandchildren, Addison, Brooklyn, Charley and Sawyer Swearingen, and Ryder Pearson; and eight nieces and nephews, and a collection of friends from all walks of life who turned into family along the way.

A celebration of life will be held on Friday, August 3rd at 2:00 pm at The Woodlands United Methodist Church in the Robb Chapel.

For memorial contributions, the family suggests donating to St. Baldrick's Foundation.

Posted by Patrick Hurley on 26th November 2018
Ken Nemetz was a neighbor and youthful friend of the Hurley family on whose behalf I am writing this tribute. I was very saddened to learn of his unexpected passing and am just so sorry for all the friends and family he left behind so prematurely. He was always a rambunctious kid, full of mischief, fun and laughter. He is also the first sibling member of the Hurley/Nemetz clan to pass and it is just so haunting to remember those long ago times and realize how time passes and takes forever away (in this life) the smiling young faces of those carefree days - which Ken will always be apart of. Be he now at peace.
Posted by Deborah Houston on 16th August 2018
What heartbreaking news. Our thoughts are with Kenny's children, his siblings, and his friends. The pictures and posts on this site are such a tribute to Kenny. What wonderful memories of his contagious smile and his love of family. Our sincere condolences, The Houston Cousins: Deb, Jim, Cassie, and Courtney
Posted by Tracy Wilkerson on 14th August 2018
Below is the eulogy Kenny’s sister Eileen wrote and delivered at the church service memorial. “I Got This:” Fearless Till the End The Baby, The Kid Kenneth James Nemetz was born June 27, 1961 at Holy Name Hospital in Teaneck, New Jersey. His parents, George and Anita Nemetz, were sweethearts at Cliffside Park High School in New Jersey who later married and had six children: Cheryl, Andrea, George, Eileen, Kenny and Linda. As a baby, Kenny was cute and quiet – so quiet that when the family piled into the station wagon to go to church, we pulled away without realizing Kenny wasn’t in the car. When Daddy did a head count and noticed Kenny wasn’t in the car, we frantically turned the car around and raced back – only to find him on the front porch sitting quietly in his baby seat with an adorable grin on his face. He was fearless. Mom said Kenny tended to climb up the dining room hutch - always soaring to new heights. He was fearless. We called him Pudge Boy – well, because he was pudgy. He loved his Easter baskets filled with chocolate Easter bunnies and his Christmas stockings filled with candy, thus earning him another nickname – Mr. Throw-up Man. He didn’t like that one. Kenny grew up on cartoons and classic TV: Bugs Bunny, Scooby-Doo and The Three Stooges. His hilarious imitation of Curly earned him yet another nickname – Knocky Head. Ken performed stunts on demand like “Lizard Neck” where he would contort his face and neck to resemble a lizard. He also did gross stunts such as dribbling his spit below his chin - much to the amusement of his brother and sisters. The Competitor Kenny loved a good game! He would challenge anyone to Chutes and Ladders, Parcheesi, Monopoly, Battleship, Trivial Pursuit and Trivia Crack, among many others. He was a winner – and in the unusual circumstance he did NOT win – he would challenge you again until he DID win – double or nothing! He was fearless. The Athlete Kenny excelled in sports. He donned the blue pinstriped Speedo and swam for the River Plantation Swim Team, racking up trophies and ribbons; always adding to our parents’ wall of fame proudly displayed in our living room. He also competed in Junior Golf and on the high school golf team and swung a golf club like a pro. Just like Dad, Kenny played hoops – his long shot from the corner was legendary – sinking the ball through the net time after time. He volleyed tennis balls, threw the football and baseball, swatted a badminton racket, swung a croquet mallet, pitched horse shoes, quoits, darts and Jarts, and raced down ski slopes. He was fearless. The Outdoorsman Kenny loved the great outdoors. He explored the woods with George and built forts. He hunted with a bow and arrow. He fished with Dad and with family and friends on deep sea excursions off the Jersey Shore, Cape Cod and Galveston Island. He caught HUGE fish even if they were really minnows. Camping was also a major event; Ken could pitch a tent, build a camp fire, and hike a trail. His annual Wimberley camping trip – even during the great flood, did not deter him – he kept his fellow campers safe. He was fearless. Later in life, he developed a passion for gardening. Just months before he passed away, I observed him beautify my friend’s garden into a tropical paradise and watched the flowers grow and blossom over the last months of his life. The Student, The Financial Consultant Ken thrived at Conroe High School. He was active in the German Club and on the basketball team and made The National Honor Society. After graduating from high school, he went back to his east coast roots and obtained a degree in business and finance from the University of Maryland then worked as a Financial Consultant throughout his career. The Traveler Kenny was adventurous and enjoyed traveling. Our family vacations to Upstate New York, New York City, Seaside Heights, New Jersey, Niagara Falls, Philadelphia, Washington, DC, Cincinnati, Chicago, Boston, Cape Cod, and cross-country road trips from New Jersey to Texas brought wonder and education to Ken. He savored every moment of the trips from the car games of spotting license plates, to the road side stops, to the historical sites. After college, our parents gave each kid money toward a European trip. Ken called me and pitched the idea of a 3-month European trip together. So, we laughed and stumbled our way through country after country, racking up one fascinating story after another which I memorialized in a 2-volume journal set of our European adventures. He often said that aside from the births of his daughters, it was one of the happiest times of his life. We explored the unknown. He was fearless. The Friend, The People Person Ken had an abundance of friends in his orbit. He hosted get-togethers and backyard BBQ’s and invited friends and friends of friends. He was a consummate story-teller and always entertaining. When he socialized, he was gregarious and inclusive and often made a friend of a stranger. Hanging out with Kenny was Fun with a capital F! The Family Man Ken brought great joy to his grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins at our many family reunions. As a son, Ken honored and cared for his parents, George and Anita, but made a little mischief, too. As a brother to 5 siblings, he always rallied to our side for a good time or to help us carry our burdens. He surprised us with sneak trips to our colleges, bestowed sentimental gifts upon us on holidays and loved our children and friends with a genuine spirit. Ken married his high school sweetheart and had three daughters – Jessica, Malori and Aundrea. He loved his girls; he took them for haircuts; for school supplies; to their schools; their sports; their band practices; their church activities; and on family vacations. When he remarried, he became a stepdad to a daughter and 3 sons, yet always kept Jessi, Mal and Drea in his heart and front and center. When he became a grandfather, he relished in his role as Papa K to five grandchildren. The Lover of Life Ken lived life to the fullest! He wanted everyone to share in his enthusiasm for life whether it be a concert he attended, a new album by Willie Nelson, a rodeo, a festival, a Superbowl, a charity event for St. Baldrick’s Foundation, a bowl of his famous “Pasta Galvez,” a pun, a photo of a sunset, a favorite story, or a warm bear hug. The Warrior, The Believer Ken bravely battled numerous illnesses, including a neurological disease called Hepatic Encephalopathy, for which he gave himself a nickname – Neuro-Man. Despite his deteriorating health and memory, he had moments of clarity – calling out the names of his loved ones and recalling memories from his life. He battled medical challenges day after day without complaint, without pity, without hopelessness and with a steely determination, compliance and optimism. When he was rushed to the ER at UTMB in Galveston, he fought through every test, every poke of a needle, and faced every update from the medical staff, including the news of his cancer. His faith in God, his love of family and friends and his exuberance for life gave him the courage to bid us farewell. Throughout his battle he assured me, “I got this!” And he did. He was fearless. ---------------------------- On a personal note, I would like to thank the family members and friends who were part of Ken’s life and his support during his illness. Special shout outs to: Ryan and Pat, Leslie and Bob, Frank and his family, Leah and Tracy, Lynn, nurses Deborah and Kerri and the brave men - Captain Smith and the Galveston Firefighters - who lifted Ken up toward the heavens. We will miss you forever you wonderful, charming, funny, fearless and loving soul. God bless you, Kenny. -Ili (aka Eileen)
Posted by Dagmar Kloske-Herzog on 14th August 2018
When I am thinking of Kenny, I remember a funny person who loved his family and his friends and who enjoyed life. I remember his visit to Germany with his sister Eileen when we all were young. We had so much fun together. Now two of us are gone: my brother Freddy and my friend Kenny! From time to time I was in the US visiting members of the Nemetz family, my dear friends, and although we didn't meet often, I always felt so close to all of them. And when Kenny was with us, we always laughed a lot and enjoyed being together. It is hard to imagine that I never see him in my live! I never forget him! Much love to the Nemetz family from your German friend Daggy! Dear Kenny - rest in peace!!!
Posted by Ceci Salanova on 13th August 2018
My memory of the Nemetz family is of a house full of people laughing.. teasing.. arguing..debating.. competing and loving each other very much... I can only imagine the magnitude of their grieving ... May God fill you with much peace and strength during these trying times. Thank you for always letting me be part of the family.. I too loved Kenny and he will be missed...
Posted by Jean Toohey on 6th August 2018
Kenny was one of Ed's close friends growing up in Conroe. I remember him playing basketball on the driveway with Ed, Geoff, and Randy. Kenny had a way of making anything seem possible, except growing up. I will never forget having Kenny join my 13th birthday party mainly because of the dinner.
Posted by Mary Stanton on 6th August 2018
To the family of Kenny Nemetz, Kenny was one of the sweetest friends a girl could have. He was so huggable and approachable. We were friends from Junior High and High School class of 79'. I was so saddened to hear of your loss. We had lost touch over the years, but I hope it brings you joy to know that he was always kind and good and thoughtful. With thoughts and prayers, Mary "Bubba" Place Stanton
Posted by Randall Stephens on 4th August 2018
Kenny, Ed, Geoff, and me. If there was a Band of Brothers, we were it. Around Conroe in the late 1970's, if you wanted to find any one of us, you just had to find another one of us. Either we were hangin' out together, or knew where the others were. I'm still not sure if out parents were happy about that, or scared. Weekend parties, shooting hoops in Kenny's driveway, football on the power easements. I'll always remember Kenny's excellent outside jumper, his mischievous, sideways grin (Kenny was always up to something), his ability to make me laugh, and of course, The Dodge. See you up there Kenny Boy. My thoughts and prayers are with your family.
Posted by Liz Kimberlin on 2nd August 2018
To the Nemetz Family -- and especially my dear Eileen: There will never be words sufficient, even from the greatest writers in the world, to ease the pain I know you are all in right now. Ken came from one of the strongest, most positive, loving families it has been my privilege and honor to be included in as an extended member -- as George and Anita, and all the rest of you, included so many others. I only met Ken briefly a few times, usually at the annual Thanksgiving Eve parties in NYC. But I remember he always took such great joy in life and embraced everyone whether he knew them well or not. His physical presence is gone, but the essence of who he is will NEVER go away -- and will always be there waiting and hoping for you to ask for a visit. All my love to you ... Liz Kimberlin
Posted by Jeff Wood on 1st August 2018
Kenny, Geoff, Ed, and Randy ...what a time we had making people laugh, even though I'm sure we thought we were funnier than we really were. Jimmy Buffet music, our humanities film, Team Budweiser, and senior skip day in Galveston....that's what I remember. We always had fun. No matter where we were or who we were with. Those memories will always warm me on cold nights and make me smile when I am sad. So long Kenny. Hugs to your family!!!
Posted by Joni Hruska Fichter on 1st August 2018
Dear Nemetz Family, When I moved to Conroe from Dallas my junior year in high school, Kenny and friends warmly welcomed me into their wonderful group! He was the life of the party and a dear friend. I was blessed to know him and I know yall will miss him dearly. He has left a great legacy in yall so continue to honor him by doing good things. God bless yall and may he help heal your broken hearts. With love and prayers, Joni
Posted by Chip Dahl on 1st August 2018
I was so saddened to hear of Kenny's passing. My heart felt condolences and prayers to the Nemetz and extended family. It has been a few of years since our paths last crossed at a favorite watering hole in the Woodlands but we embraced and laughed and talked of good times. His classic dry wit and humor with an occasional snicker will not be lost. God speed my friend.
Posted by John Sorrentino on 31st July 2018
Kenny will be missed. Even though we haven't been around each other for a while, he was a great friend and "pauds" during the late nineties and early 2000's. Lots of golf at Conroe CC, great pool parties, but most importantly Kenny introduced me to a large network of the Woodlands "Rat Pack". So much fun and such great people to spend time with and so generous in every way. I can still see him fluffing up his lie in the deep rough at The Woodlands CC now. All the blessings and prayers to Kenny and his family from the Sorrentino's.
Posted by Susan Kuchman on 30th July 2018
To the Nemetz Family, I was truly saddened to hear about the passing of Kenny. He absolutely always brought a smile to my face, often along with a little shake of the head. He was always uplifting and fun to be with, although it's been years. May God Bless him and all of you at this difficult time. Love, Susan

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