Obituary: Kevin Armstrong
Kevin Francis Armstrong May 6, 1984 – May 8, 2020
Kev, Kevster, Kevy, Kevmeister, The Big Guy, Buddy, Armstrong, Brother, and, most importantly, Daddy. He had a lot of nicknames, but they all referred to the same incredible man: Kevin Francis Armstrong. Born May 6, 1984, in Park Ridge, Illinois, to Elizabeth Gauger and John Armstrong, Kevin passed away May 8, 2020, in Elmira, New York.
Kevin grew up in Carbondale, Colorado and graduated from Roaring Fork High School in 2002. He was larger than life in a lot of ways. A big man with an even bigger personality, it was nearly impossible not to notice him when he walked into a room. As a child, he was boisterous and eager, always active and looking for the next adventure or game to play: bike trails with jumps, fields to play football in, trampolines to bounce on, puddles to splash through (or splash his sisters), trees to climb, forts to build. His energy made him unafraid to try new things, whether that was diving off a cliff into the waters of Lake Powell 20 feet below, cutting a fresh path through trees while skiing or snowboarding, captaining a boat, or dropping in at the half pipe on his skateboard or rollerblades. His lack of fear became a model of bravery for his sisters, and they could often be found following behind him, on skis or wheels or foot, doing their best to keep up. He told great stories, was incredibly funny, and wove movie quotes into regular conversation; his favorites were lines from Star Wars, Ghostbusters, Ace Ventura,Tommy Boy, Caddyshack, and It’s a Wonderful Life.
As an adult, Kevin returned to Chicago and lived there for several years. His outgoing personality won him friends wherever he went, and he never shied away from talking sports. He was an avid fan of all teams Chicago: da Bears, Bulls, White Sox, and Blackhawks. He always helped when he could and his size often made him the go-to guy when someone needed to move–he carried many couches up and down stairs, navigating corners like a pro. He had love for all the people around him, especially his family, and his bear hugs were legendary. He absolutely loved being a father, and his daughters filled his heart and his life with love, laughter, and purpose. His oldest daughter, Bridget, wrote him a poem titled My Dad is Strong: “This man was so tall he could blow the clouds. His name was Kevin. He was 1,000 feet tall and he was so strong he could chop down 6,822 trees and not be tyred.”
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Kevin is survived by his daughters, Bridget and Abigail, his parents Elizabeth Gauger and John Armstrong, his “big little” sister Colette Armstrong (and husband Aaron Hipple), younger sister Ivy Armstrong, step-brother Tyler Lindsay, step-sister Hillary Lazinski, 19 aunts and uncles, 48 cousins, and friends across the country who were like family to him. Due to the ongoing covid-19 pandemic, in-person memorial services are uncertain and unplanned. In lieu of any flowers, the family has opened college funds for his daughters. Any contributions should be made payable to: The Vanguard 529 College Savings Plan, and mailed to Kevin’s sister, Colette Armstrong, at 974 Harrison Street, San Francisco, CA, 94107, who will distribute the money equally into the accounts.
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