Popular Poughkeepsie restaurant owner Kenneth Robert Hallett died unexpectedly due to brief illness on the morning of Wednesday, July 26, at Vassar Brothers Medical Center in Poughkeepsie. He was 57.
He was the devoted owner of the Southside Restaurant and Café in Hudson Plaza on Route 9 in Poughkeepsie where his motto “Cooking so good you’ll think we kidnapped your mother” was a level of excellence he always strived to achieve.
Kenneth is survived by his parents Eugene and Sally Hallett of Poughkeepsie, his siblings Kevin Hallett of Boca Raton, FL, his sister Whitney Druker of Red Hook, his sister Eileen Truitt and her husband Jim of Red Hook, his daughter Ashley Wennersten and her husband Matthew of Poughkeepsie; his daughter Chelsea Martin of Lutz, FL; his former wife Jeanne Tedesco, the mother of Ashley and Chelsea; Kenny was widowed by his longtime partner Laura Kaebler. He is also survived by Laura’s daughter, Nicole Kaebler, his grandchildren Gabriella Wennersten, Lena Martin, and Nola Martin; his nephew Trent Truitt, his niece Tristen Truitt and his partner Maria Mayone.
Born on May 18, 1960 in Freeport, NY to Eugene and Sally Hallett he attended St. Martin de Porres from first to eighth grade and graduated from Our Lady of Lourdes High School in 1979.
He attended SUNY Dutchess and SUNY Cobleskill and graduated with associates degrees in Hotel Business and Management.
His children remember him as “Daddy” a fun loving, carefree, inspirational person who strove to make a better life for his children. His employees remember him as a passionate, team builder who always wanted his employees to feel like they were part of an extended family.
He was an outgoing, silly individual who loved to crank up his Harley on his days off, morning breakfast meet-ups at the local diner, simply floating around the pool with Dad and who was passionate about caring for his family. Ken was a drum corps major for the Hudson Valley Rivermen and the Kingston Indians Drum Corps and was also an active and dedicated member of the Saint Martin de Porres Church.
A viewing is scheduled for Monday, July 31, from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. WM. G. Miller and Son, FH, Inc., 371 Hooker Avenue, Poughkeepsie, NY 12603. A Mass of Christian Burial will be at St Martin De Porres Church, 118 Cedar Valley Rd., Poughkeepsie, NY 12603 The service will begin at 10 a.m. Tuesday, Aug. 1.
In lieu of flowers, Ken’s family would like to do something special to commemorate his life in an industry everyone knew he loved. They would like to create a scholarship fund in Ken’s name with the purpose of supporting school children who wish to pursue a career in the hospitality industry.
Please send donations to the Southside Restaurant, 2585 South Rd, Poughkeepsie, NY 12601 or call the restaurant for additional questions at 845-454-0379 if no answer please leave a message and someone will call you back. If you wish to send an online condolence please visit our website at www. wmgmillerfuneralhome.com .
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