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Kelvin J. Arden Obituary

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Kelvin J. Arden

Poughkeepsie, NY

August 1, 1923 - December 25, 2012

Kelvin J. Arden Obituary

Kelvin J. Arden, 89, a former Ithaca resident, died peacefully Christmas Morning 2012 in Kent, CT. Mr. Arden was a pioneer in the field of College and University Publications, having established the first departments of University Publications at both NYU and Cornell University. He worked for Cornell from 1964 to 1986, first as Director of Publications and retiring as Director of University Communications. The author of numerous articles and a book on the topic, he was also a consultant to educational institutions and associations and a frequent speaker at conferences. Mr. Arden was a member of the American Institute of Graphic Arts, the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education, the Typophiles, the American Printing History Association, and the New York Type Directors. He edited Cornell’s 1968 volume of essays, The Quality of Life, which was named one of the best Fifty Books of the year by the American Institute of Graphic Arts.

Mr. Arden served in World War II in five campaigns: Normandy, Northern France, the Ardennes, Rhineland, and Central Europe. As a member of the 92nd Chemical Mortar Battalion, he spent more than 300 days within 1,000 yards of the front lines. He helped to open the path for the infantry at St. Lo, stop Runstedt’s SS plunge, clear the east bank of the Rhine for the crossing of the First Army, and crush the Ruhr pocket, finally moving across Germany for the historic junction with the Russian Army. He returned home a devout pacifist and critic of the military, business, and political establishments. Mr. Arden was known for his calm logic, fairness, and gentleness. He received an A.B in English from North Central College in 1949 and an M.S. from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University in 1952. He served his community through the United Way, Boy Scout Council, and PTA. He loved spending time with his family and enjoyed photography, fishing, jazz music, sailing at the Ithaca Yacht Club, and painting.

The son of the late Arden Johnson and Wilhelmina Kurz Johnson, he was born August 1, 1923. In 1950, he married the love of his life, Shirley Schulze, in Chicago. In addition to his wife, he is survived by his son, Erik (Sandy) of Lockport, daughter Jenny (Steve Rock) of Poughkeepsie, and grandchildren Tiffany Flynn (Michael), Tianna Morrow (William), and Andy and Julia Rock, as well as nieces, nephews, cousins and many others. He was predeceased by his brother Richard and sister Phoebe. A private graveside service will be held this spring. Condolences may be sent to Shirley Arden at The Kent, 46 Maple Street, Kent CT 06757, or emailed to

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