Lawrence J. "Larry" Siefers, 78, loving husband, father, grandpa, and brother, died at Ellinwood District Hospital on August 11, 2019, surrounded by his family. Larry was president and owner of Larry's Welding Service in rural Ellinwood and was a lifetime Ellinwood resident. He was a member of St. Joseph Catholic Church, Ellinwood, and a member of the Knights of Columbus for over 50 years. He was proud to have been named Knight of the Year in 2009.
Larry was born September 11, 1940, to John J. and Ruth B. (Hull) Siefers, at St. Rose Hospital in Great Bend, Kansas. He married Sherrie I. Holl on March 12, 1959, at St. Rose Catholic Church, Great Bend. He was preceded in death by his parents, sister-in-laws Neva Ann Disque and Ruth Schlochtermeier, and many other loved ones.
Survivors include his wife of 60 years, Sherrie; sons Mark (Terri) and John E., daughters Teresa (Kenny) Sieker, Jennifer (Fred) Albers, all of Ellinwood, and Christine Siefers of Wichita; 10 grandchildren Andrew (Rachel) Sieker, Christopher Sieker, Katie (Cory) Gatton, Tyler Parks, Zachary Siefers, Anissa Albers, Jeffrey Albers, Kyle (Kate) Albers, Jessica (Jacob) Keener, and Victoria Siefers; six great-grandchildren Caden Sieker, Micah Sieker, Easton Sieker, Hudson Gatton, Kinsley Racette, and Blakeli White; sister Beth Olson, of Perry, KS, brother Terry Siefers, of Ellinwood, and many cousins.
Larry was proud of the fact he built his business by never taking out a loan. He started by hooking into the light pole at his residence south of Ellinwood in 1972. Because of the quality of his work, integrity, and word of mouth, Larry's business grew over the 55 years he actively ran his business. He was happy to share his skills of welding, braising, lathe work and everything in between with anyone who expressed an interest in learning. Over the years, Larry's Welding Service built seven new oil drilling rigs from scratch and modified or repaired at least five others for various drilling companies around the state. At one point in the early 1980s, he employed 10 people. Son John continues to run the business.
Larry defied the odds of survival when his pelvis was crushed on June 30, 1964, near Pratt when the horsehead of a pumping unit fell on him. Doctors said he would never walk again, but after 99 days at St. Francis Hospital in Wichita, Larry left on crutches and proved them all wrong. Larry loved talking with his friends and telling stories about the antics they got into in their youth, taking road trips with Sherrie, and spending time with his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren and the rest of his family. Whenever Larry and his friends got together laughter filled the space. Siefers family Fourth of July celebrations were always epic. Larry was very generous with his time, talents, and treasure. If he saw the need for something and he could help, he did whatever he could to make it happen.
Funeral mass will be 10:00 AM, Wednesday, August 14th at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Ellinwood with Father Terrance Klein officiating. Burial will follow at Lakin-Comanche District Cemetery in Ellinwood. Visitation will be Tuesday, August 13th at Minnis Chapel in Ellinwood from 1-6 PM with Rosary/Vigil service at 7 PM at St. Joseph's Catholic Church. Memorials are suggested to St. Joseph’s School Living Legacy, K of C charity programs, and Kindred Hospice in care of Minnis Chapel, PO Box 246, Ellinwood, KS 67526.