Port Leyden- Kevin A. Ward, Jr., 20 of Kelpytown Road, passed away on Saturday, August 9, 2014, in a tragic Sprint Car racing accident, at the Canandaigua Motorsports Park, Canandaigua, NY. Affectionately known as "Budster," and later as "Junior," Kevin, during his teenage years had become an icon- "and one of a kind," in Motorsport Racing.
Kevin was born in Rome, on May 23, 1994, a son of Kevin A. and Pamela Colwell Ward, Sr. He grew up in Port Leyden, where he attended elementary school, completing his education at South Lewis Senior High School, where he graduated with the Class of 2012. While attending high school, he attended the Howard G. Sackett BOCES Center, Glenfield, where he majored in Automobile Technology; during that time he greatly enjoyed completing an Auto Tech Internship at Lee Buick, Inc. Boonville.
While growing up Kevin participated in 8 Man Football, Baseball and AYSO Soccer, all in Port Leyden.
When he was 16 Kevin began working with his dad in the operation of Westward Painting Co. Inc., of Lyons Falls, a business that was founded by Kevin Ward, Sr. in 1992. At the present time he was employed as head mechanic and as a painter for the painting company.
The headline in the Watertown Times was accurate; "Kevin Ward's Life was Racing." Since the age of 4, Kevin Ward Jr. had been behind the wheel of a racecar. He began racing go carts at the age of 4 and as a teen he raced a 270 Micro Sprint at Paradise Speedway, Geneva, NY. Kevin was in his fifth year of racing in the Empire Super Sprints 360 Sprint Car Class throughout the northeastern United States and Canada. In 2013, Mr. Ward made racing history at the Evans Mills Speedway when he won the first Empire Super Sprints race on an asphalt track surface despite never having raced on asphalt before. "Kevin will always be remembered as an inspiration…and a good man."
In addition to his parents, Kevin and Pamela, he is survived by three sisters, Christi (David) Cavanaugh, Boonville, Kayla (DJ) Herring, Lyons Falls, Katelyn Ward, Port Leyden; his maternal grandparents, Francis Colwell, Boonville, Gaylee (Bob) Smith, Sauquoit; his paternal grandmother, Jean Ward, Lyons Falls. He was predeceased by his paternal grandfather Leonard Ward, who died in 1968. Also surviving are aunts, uncles, cousins and two beloved nephews and nieces, Landen, Tucker, Delaney and Hailee.
Funeral Services will be Thursday at 11:00 A.M. at South Lewis Senior High School, East Road, Turin, where Rev. Kevin Westcott, President of Finish Line Chaplain Ministries will officiate.
Calling hours are Wednesday 12 Noon until 4 p.m. and 6 until 9 p.m. at Trainor Funeral Home, Inc. 143 Schuyler St. Boonville. Memorial contributions may be made to Empire Super Sprints Injured Driver's Fund 5562 Bear Road Apt. C2 North Syracuse, NY 13212.
Read Kevin Ward, Jr.'s Obituary and Guestbook on www.trainorfuneralhome.com.