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Armis Lenall Worlund Obituary

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Armis Lenall Worlund

Huntsville, Alabama

May 12, 1935 - June 10, 2024

Armis Lenall Worlund Obituary

Armis Lenall (Len) Worlund was born in Conecuh County, Alabama – the fifth of nine children. Seeking better work opportunities, his family moved north settling in New Market where Len spent his childhood working on his family’s small farm. Per his father’s request, Len completed 2 years at Graceland College in Iowa before transferring to Alabama Polytechnic Institute (now Auburn University) to study engineering. He began his studies in chemical engineering, but soon discovered that he was “too sloppy” to accurately complete the experiments. He switched to mechanical engineering graduating with a Bachelor’s and Master’s in 1959.

After a brief work period in Pensacola, FL, Len decided to return to Huntsville to work for a newly established government agency tasked with putting a man on the moon. That decision resulted in almost 42-years at NASA Marshall Space Flight Center spanning from 1961 to 2002.

Len worked primarily with the propulsion liquid rocket engine systems – from the development and operation of the Saturn H-1, Saturn J-2, Saturn F-1, to the Space Shuttle Main Engine programs. His responsibilities covered the spectrum of propulsion activities including Manager of Technology Test Bed Project, Deputy Director of Propulsion Laboratories and ending his career as the Chief Engineer for Space Shuttle Main Engine Systems. He received the NASA Exceptional Engineering Achievement Medal, the NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal, and the Space Flight Awareness Leadership Recognition Award.

During his career, Len became a recognized authority in evaluating safety, integrity, functionality, and durability of high-performance liquid engines and cryogenic propellant systems. He performed and led investigations of over 20 major failures and numerous incidents of anomalous component operations including the Challenger incident.

While at API (AU), Len met and married Kennie B Holmes and were just 2 months shy of spending 66 years together. Together they had four children: Dawne Douthit (Terry), Denise McCay (Tom), David Worlund (Renae) and Doug Worlund (Wendy); 13 grandchildren and 27 great grandchildren (a baby girl to arrive later this month).

Len and Kennie spent many years serving and worshipping at Jackson Way Baptist Church where Len coached Royal Ambassador (RA) basketball teams and chaperoned youth mission trips. In 1990, they joined First Baptist Church (FBC) where Len loved to sing in the weekly church choir and participate in the annual Living Christmas Tree performances. He and Kennie also led the Home Bound Sunday School class for the last 20 years – regularly visiting the elderly members to provide companionship and comfort.

Len traveled extensively with Kennie during the middle and later years of their marriage. They took many trips and cruises with FBC groups, close friends, their children, and grandchildren - visiting the British Isles, most of Europe, Israel, the Caribbean, the Panama Canal and more. He was known to be very generous – making the effort to attend family events across the country and around the world, lending out his cars, tools, furniture, etc., allowing family members to retreat home when temporary housing was needed, and supporting family mission projects.

Len was active and social by nature. In retirement, he golfed with friends and family, joined The Gideons, attended NASA Retiree luncheons, and ate breakfast each morning with friends at the local Hardees. As his health changed, he adapted to walking the hills around his neighborhood chatting with available neighbors, calling NASA friends, and visiting the Huntsville library used bookstore and Costco for biographies and historical fiction. When visitors arrived, he scurried from the bedroom – not wanting to miss any part of the conversation.

Len has joined his father and mother (John Emmett Worlund and Evelyn Angle Worlund), his brothers (Shyron, John, Donald, and Bob), his sisters (Allanah Worlund Potter Johnson and Wytonna Worlund Honey) and his granddaughter (Nicole McCaul) in Heaven. He is now waiting to be reunited with those family members whom he loved so deeply and generously.

Kennie has asked that any remembrances of Len be donated to The Gideons or to First Baptist Church Huntsville (mission projects).

To share a memory or send a condolence gift, please visit the Official Obituary of Armis Lenall Worlund hosted by Spry Funeral Home & Crematory.

Armis Lenall (Len) Worlund was born in Conecuh County, Alabama – the fifth of nine children. Seeking better work opportunities, his family moved north settling in New Market where Len spent his childhood working on his family’s small farm. Per his father’s request, Len completed 2 years at Graceland College in Iowa before transferring to Alabama Polytechnic Institute (now Auburn University) to study engineering. He began his studies in chemical engineering, but soon discovered that he was “too sloppy” to accurately complete the experiments. He switched to mechanical engineering graduating with a Bachelor’s and Master’s in 1959.

After a brief work period in Pensacola, FL, Len decided to return to Huntsville to work for a newly established government agency tasked with putting a man on the moon. That decision resulted in almost 42-years at NASA Marshall Space Flight Center spanning from 1961 to 2002.

Len worked primarily with the propulsion liquid rocket engine systems – from the development and operation of the Saturn H-1, Saturn J-2, Saturn F-1, to the Space Shuttle Main Engine programs. His responsibilities covered the spectrum of propulsion activities including Manager of Technology Test Bed Project, Deputy Director of Propulsion Laboratories and ending his career as the Chief Engineer for Space Shuttle Main Engine Systems. He received the NASA Exceptional Engineering Achievement Medal, the NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal, and the Space Flight Awareness Leadership Recognition Award.

During his career, Len became a recognized authority in evaluating safety, integrity, functionality, and durability of high-performance liquid engines and cryogenic propellant systems. He performed and led investigations of over 20 major failures and numerous incidents of anomalous component operations including the Challenger incident.

While at API (AU), Len met and married Kennie B Holmes and were just 2 months shy of spending 66 years together. Together they had four children: Dawne Douthit (Terry), Denise McCay (Tom), David Worlund (Renae) and Doug Worlund (Wendy); 13 grandchildren and 27 great grandchildren (a baby girl to arrive later this month).

Len and Kennie spent many years serving and worshipping at Jackson Way Baptist Church where Len coached Royal Ambassador (RA) basketball teams and chaperoned youth mission trips. In 1990, they joined First Baptist Church (FBC) where Len loved to sing in the weekly church choir and participate in the annual Living Christmas Tree performances. He and Kennie also led the Home Bound Sunday School class for the last 20 years – regularly visiting the elderly members to provide companionship and comfort.

Len traveled extensively with Kennie during the middle and later years of their marriage. They took many trips and cruises with FBC groups, close friends, their children, and grandchildren - visiting the British Isles, most of Europe, Israel, the Caribbean, the Panama Canal and more. He was known to be very generous – making the effort to attend family events across the country and around the world, lending out his cars, tools, furniture, etc., allowing family members to retreat home when temporary housing was needed, and supporting family mission projects.

Len was active and social by nature. In retirement, he golfed with friends and family, joined The Gideons, attended NASA Retiree luncheons, and ate breakfast each morning with friends at the local Hardees. As his health changed, he adapted to walking the hills around his neighborhood chatting with available neighbors, calling NASA friends, and visiting the Huntsville library used bookstore and Costco for biographies and historical fiction. When visitors arrived, he scurried from the bedroom – not wanting to miss any part of the conversation.

Len has joined his father and mother (John Emmett Worlund and Evelyn Angle Worlund), his brothers (Shyron, John, Donald, and Bob), his sisters (Allanah Worlund Potter Johnson and Wytonna Worlund Honey) and his granddaughter (Nicole McCaul) in Heaven. He is now waiting to be reunited with those family members whom he loved so deeply and generously.

Kennie has asked that any remembrances of Len be donated to The Gideons or to First Baptist Church Huntsville (mission projects).

To share a memory or send a condolence gift, please visit the Official Obituary of Armis Lenall Worlund hosted by Spry Funeral Home & Crematory.

Events

Event information can be found on the Official Obituary of Armis Lenall Worlund.