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Frankie Lea Keffer 1932-2011

POSTED September 22, 2011 4:41 p.m.

Frankie Lea Keffer, 78, died Sept. 22 at home in Great Bend. She was born Oct. 14, 1932 in Hutchinson, the daughter of William E. "Rass" and Hazel O. (Zumalt) Watkins.

Mrs. Keffer grew up in Hutchinson, graduating from Hutchinson High School in 1951. After finishing school, she went to work in a grocery store, where she met Arthur Keffer. They fell in love, and were married on Jan. 19, 1952, in Hutchinson at Hadley Methodist Church. In 1964, the family moved to Great Bend. Frankie and Arthur were blessed with four daughters and three sons. Arthur preceded her in death on Feb. 25, 2000.

She enjoyed being a mother and a housewife, but still managed to work numerous part-time and full-time jobs throughout her life. To name a few, she worked as a para-professional for USD 428, she owned her own restaurant, Jeanie’s Kitchen, and was in charge of food service for the Barton County Sheriff’s Office. Mrs. Keffer was a member of Prince of Peace Parish at St. Rose of Lima Catholic Church and the Altar Society, the Lion’s Club, supported various Masonic groups, Argonne Rebels Drum and Bugle Corps, and served as Worthy Matron for the Order of the Eastern Star #226 of Great Bend.

Frankie’s passions were cooking, reading, drawing, painting and crafting. Most of all, she loved spending time with her family, especially her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Survivors include: seven children, Anita "Ellen" Fischer and husband Dennis of Great Bend, Jayne Wapelhorst of Great Bend, Jean Herrman of Great Bend, Anna Donecker and husband Craig of Great Bend, Arthur E. Keffer and wife Terri of Ellinwood, William G. "Bill" Keffer and wife Vicki of Great Bend, Lee A. Keffer and wife Brenda of rural Russell; 13 grandchildren and 28 great-grandchildren; and one sister, Margaret Ward of Hutchinson. She was preceded in death by her parents, her brother Clifford Watkins, two great-grandsons Wyatt Allen and Austin Lee Fischer, and by her son-in-law, Gene Herrman.

The Altar Society Rosary will be at 4 p.m., Sunday at Bryant Funeral Home. The Vigil Service will be 7 p.m. Sunday at St. Rose of Lima Catholic Church in Great Bend. The Mass of Christian burial will be at 10 a.m. Monday at St. Rose of Lima Catholic Church. The celebrant will be Father Don Bedore. Interment will be at Great Bend Cemetery. Visitation is from 9 a.m. until 9 p.m. Saturday and 1-6 p.m., Sunday, all at Bryant Funeral Home. The memorial fund will be Sunflower Shrine Travel Fund, in care of Bryant Funeral Home.

Condolences may be sent and notice viewed at

Funeral arrangements provided by

Bryant Funeral Home*

1425 Patton Road

Great Bend, KS 67530

Great Bend (Kan) Tribune, Sept. 23, 2011


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