James Kenneth McWhorter

Memorial service

Friday, March 27, 2015

Location: Ft. Logan National Cemetery

3698 S. Sheridan Blvd., Denver, CO 80235.

The military ceremony will start at 2:15 PM. There will be a reception at
Arrowhead Golf Club, Roxborough Park, 10850 Sundown Trail,
Littleton, CO 80125 immediately following the funeral

It is recommended that guests arrive at Ft. Logan
between 1:45 PM and 2:00 PM to assemble at a staging area.
We will be escorted by cemetery personnel to the

Ken McWhorter, former Braniff pilot and husband of Karalee Champion McWhorter, 1959-1982, is under Hospice care after complications from pneumonia and Parkinson’s Disease.



Ken McWhorter James Kenneth McWhorter, born October

20, 1934, to Roy Lee McWhorter and Lily Velma (Choate)

McWhorter in Texarkana, TX, passed away on March 11, 2015 in

Denver, CO, from complications of Parkinson’s disease.

Ken grew up in Texarkana and attended Texarkana High School

where he played football for the Tigers. He graduated

from the University of North Texas and joined the United

States Air Force in 1956. He served for ten years and

achieved the rank of Captain. In 1966 he was hired as

Chief Navigator at Braniff International Airlines to train

pilots on trans-oceanic navigation systems to fly Military

Air Contract flights to Southeast Asia during the Viet Nam

conflict. As a Braniff pilot he was a First Officer on

the B-707, DC-8 and B-727 and Captain on the B-727. In

1968 he married a Braniff flight attendant, Karalee

Champion. During the Braniff hijacking in South

America in 1971, he volunteered to be part of Captain Al

Schroeder’s crew in Lima because the airplane was not

equipped with over-water navigation equipment and the final

destination was to be Algiers.

Ken had many hobbies and he enjoyed being outdoors. He

learned to ski while he was in the Air Force and was a

member of the first Braniff Ski Team. He was an avid

bicycle enthusiast; owned a BMW motorcycle and enjoyed

taking trips through the western USA. He flew

sailplanes and on their second date he took Karalee for a

sailplane ride. He enjoyed camping and was active with

the Boy Scouts when Andrew was a Scout. He was a

photographer and took beautiful photos on his travels around

the world. He also took beautiful pictures of his

children. He designed and built many projects at his

home in Colorado.

Ken was a faithful member of Littleton United Methodist

Church for thirty-five years. He was also a member of

the Littleton Optimist Club.

He was preceded in death by his father, Roy McWhorter; his

mother, Velma McWhorter; and his brother, Emory Foster


Survivors include Karalee McWhorter, son Andrew McWhorter

and wife, Karin; daughter Allison Morris and husband,

Brennon; grandson Collin McWhorter; grand-daughter Anna

McWhorter; nephew Foster McWhorter; cousins Bobbie Andres

and Vonn Robinson and numerous friends and colleagues.

We would like to thank the staff and caregivers at the

Englewood Meridian and acknowledge the wonderful care and

compassion that they showed to Ken every day for thirteen

months. Special thanks, also, to the Coffee Group guys

who were steadfast friends and there when he needed them


Burial will be at Ft. Logan National Cemetery, Denver,

Colorado, and a memorial celebration of Ken’s life will

be planned. Dates are pending.

A memorial gift in honor of Ken, in lieu of flowers, may be

made to The Braniff Silver Eagles Charitable Fund, 720

Highridge, Little Elm, TX 75068.

On behalf of John North

BISE Information: Captain Ken McWhorter – Final Flight