Kurt Henry Boenker, 76, of Lee’s Summit, MO passed away at Lee’s Summit Medical Center on November 21, 2023 with his family by his side, after a short battle with lung cancer.
Kurt was born September 25, 1947, at St. Luke’s Hospital in Kansas City, Missouri, to Leroy Henry Jr. and Frances Faye (Secrest) Boenker. His parents, along with his infant sister, Marjory, were tragically killed in a car accident in 1950. His paternal grandparents, Leroy H. Sr. “Big Bunk” and Marjory C. (Guffey) Boenker, adopted him and his brother, Carl.
Kurt graduated from Hot Springs High School in Hot Springs, Arkansas in 1965. Kurt attended the University of Missouri, graduating with a B.S. in Business Administration in 1969. He had a passion for baseball and was an outstanding walk-on second baseman and shortstop for the Missouri Tigers Baseball Team. He continued to be a devoted MIZZOU Tiger fan.
Kurt served in the U.S. Army 1st Cavalry Division during the Vietnam War. While serving, he earned several awards, including the National Defense Service Medal, the Vietnam Service Medal, the Combat Infantryman Badge, and the Bronze Star.
After an honorable discharge, Kurt began a 32-year career with Western Electric, starting as an installer and worked his way to a successful Project Manager. The company went through several name changes, AT&T and Lucent. One of his most significant accomplishments was his contributions to 5G technology in the telecommunications industry.
He was united in marriage to Marietta Wilson on August 30,1980 in Lee’s Summit, Missouri on the beautiful Wilson Family property.
After retirement, Kurt drove a school bus for Lee’s Summit R7 School District for a couple of years and then transitioned to a custodian for Pleasant Lea Elementary School. He cherished the relationships he formed with students and staff.
Kurt loved all sports. He shared his passion for waterskiing, baseball/softball and golf with his children. His children and grandchildren were his pride and joy. He was a big supporter in the stands at all their competitive games and activities. However, he was always stressing the importance of getting their education first.
Kurt was the true meaning of a man of faith. Before suffering a debilitating stroke in December 2014, he was an active member of Lee’s Summit Christian Church. He served on various committees, but a highlight of his service was delivering communion to the homebound members of the congregation.
Following his stroke, Kurt found inspiration in working out at the Lee’s Summit Gamber Center’s gym. He worked out 6 days a week and hated to miss a day. He made many friends there and looked forward to seeing them each day.
Kurt was preceded in death by his parents, infant sister Marjory, maternal and paternal grandparents, brother Carl L. Boenker, Aunt Josephine “Jo-June” Ironsmith, Uncle Harry M. “Duke” Ironsmith, cousin Nancy (Ironsmith) Wart and step-granddaughter Amber Brady.
Living out Kurt’s legacy, his loving wife, Marietta, of the home; children Kristine D. (Boenker) Mall and husband, Rob; John D. Boenker and wife, Korie; Brian K. Boenker, all of Lee’s Summit; stepchildren Patrick Brady, of Independence, MO, James Brady of Kansas City, KS, Julie Malone of St. Louis, MO, grandchildren, Mandy Shaw and husband Jeff, Andrea Brady, Sophie Malone, Jackson Boenker, Madison Mall, Logan Boenker, Zachary Mall, Gwenna Malone and Alston Boenker; sister-in-law Linda Boenker; nephews Michael and Matthew Boenker; cousin, who was more like a brother, Mark Ironsmith, and wife Sharon; also survived by his first wife, Susie (Grantham) Sturman and husband Steve.
Visitation will be held at Lee’s Summit Christian Church (800 NE Tudor Rd., LS, MO) on Friday, December 1st, from 9 am to 11 am, with a service immediately following. Kurt’s final resting place will be the Lee’s Summit Historical Cemetery. All are welcome to join the family at Johnny’s Tavern (1660 SE Blue Pkwy, L.S., MO) and share stories immediately following the gravesite service.
Thank you to the U.S. Army and local VFW Post 5789 for providing military honors at the gravesite.