Kenneth Sean “Ken” Veilands, 59, of Albany, GA, died December 12 ,2022, at Archbold Medical Center. A memorial service will be held Saturday, December 17, 2022 at 5:00 pm at Mathews Funeral Home. Dr. Travis Campbell will officiate.
Ken was born in Carmel, IN on October 10,1963 to Juris and Rita Veilands. He grew up there, graduating from Carmel High School. He then attended The University of Southern Indiana on a soccer scholarship and graduated with a degree in Journalism in 1989.
Ken moved to Albany, GA from Atlanta, GA in 2000, giving up the corporate world to be home for his daughter and start the men’s and women’s soccer programs at Darton State College. He served as the Women’s Soccer Coach for Darton College for sixteen years, building the program from the ground up. He led the Lady Cavaliers to make seven national tournament appearances. Ken led the Darton State women’s soccer program to become one of the top ranked programs in the NJCAA. Under his leadership they won eight NJCAA region titles and were ranked amongst the top 10 in NJCAA D1 Women’s Soccer for seven consecutive years. His 2005 Championship team continues to hold the record for the most consecutive wins by a D1 Women’s Soccer Team. Ken was inducted into Albany State University Hall of Fame in September 2022 and the NJCAA Women’s Soccer Hall of Fame on November 12, 2022.
After Ken’s coaching career, he was employed with Glaxo Smith Kline and was currently Territory Manager for Bausch Health. Although he left Soccer professionally, he continued to be active in the soccer community around South Georgia by volunteering his time with numerous soccer programs. Ken enjoyed exercising and was an avid runner. He was the happiest playing soccer with his girls, coaching not only them but their friends and classmates throughout the years.
Ken was an amazing father, present for everything his two girls did. Whether it was coaching them from the sidelines of every soccer game or attending every dance recital and school play, he was always there. He loved his girls unconditionally, supporting them in every single thing they did and choice they made. He was always there to listen and joke with his girls, with the infectious, loud laugh that he passed on to the both of them. He would do anything to be there with them no matter the circumstances. He was more than a Dad to his daughters, he was their hero, best friend, coach, mentor, role model, moral compass, and more. He was the greatest person they had ever known. There was nothing he loved more than his family, including his mom with who he had an extra special bond. And now they get to be reunited once again to watch over his two girls, their forever guardian angels.
Ken is preceded in death by his loving mother, Rita Veilands-Utterback and father, Juris Veilands.
Survivors include his wife, Catherine Watkins Veilands of Albany, GA, his daughters, Mattie Veilands of Atlanta, GA and Ansley Veilands of Valdosta, GA, his step-children, Watkins Coley of Athens, GA, McCall Coley of Athens, GA and Chapel Coley of Albany, GA and a brother, Michael Veilands of Indianapolis, IN.
The family will receive friends from 4:00 pm until 5:00 pm on Saturday at Mathews Funeral Home.
Those desiring may make memorials in memory of Ken to The Albany Humane Society, 1705 W. Oakridge Drive, Albany, GA, 31707 or to the Ronald McDonald House, 795 N. Gatewood Rd. NE, Atlanta, GA, 30329.
To sign our online registry, or to send condolences to the family, you may visit Mathews’ website at www.mathewsfuneralhome.com.
Mathews Funeral Home