Carolyn Ann Kemper
Carolyn Ann Kemper
  • March 12, 1945 - January 7, 2018
  • Brookline, Missouri

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Carolyn Ann Kemper, 72, of Columbia entered the Kingdom of Heaven after a long battle with Parkinson's disease on Sunday, January 7, 2018 at the Manor at Elfindale in Springfield, Missouri. In the days leading up to her passing, family members gathered around her to reminisce and say goodbye. Her sisters Wanda Kay and Marilyn were by her side in her final moments. Carolyn was a member of Faith Baptist Church where she worshiped our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Visitation will be held from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. on Friday, January 12, 2018 at Memorial Funeral Home. Funeral services will be held at 1:00 p.m. on Friday, January 12, 2018 at Memorial Funeral Home with Pastor Bruce Williamson officiating. Interment will be in Memorial Park Cemetery.

Carolyn was born March 12th, 1945 at Noyes Hospital (University Hospital) in Columbia to Annie Mildred (Rader) Kemper and Harold Glenn Kemper. She was born 6 minutes after her twin sister, Marilyn Sue (Kemper) Sunderland. Carolyn and her siblings grew up on the 125 acre family farm northeast of Columbia where many happy memories were made. She was a Hickman Kewpie who graduated in 1963, and she later studied at Columbia College. In 1981 she became a Certified Professional Secretary from the Professional Secretaries International. She proudly worked for 35 years for the University of Missouri. During the last 23 of those years she held the position of Executive Staff Assistant II for no less than three Vice Chancellors; most recently Kee Groshong. After much soul-searching and hand wringing, Carolyn took early retirement in 2002 and soon wondered when she had time to work!

Carolyn had a lifelong love of country music; particularly Alan Jackson. She loved country line dancing as well as square dancing. Carolyn filled her retirement days pursuing her passions, including photography, genealogy and gardening. She continued the work of her mother in researching and documenting her family history, and she was a member of the Mid-Missouri Genealogical Society. With Carolyn's support her mother wrote her life story resulting in a cherished book, and Carolyn was also a proud member of the Fortney Family Cemetery Trust.

Carolyn was equally passionate about her gardening and she had a particular love of daylilies. She was a member of the Columbia Garden Club. In 2011 her gardens were featured in the Mokanok, a daylily magazine, and that same year her personal gardens were included in a bus tour bringing people from all over the country. Her garden was filled with common, and not-so-common daylilies, and she loved them all! These flowers were a perfect reflection of Carolyn. Her nephew Brian described her best, "Carolyn walked through life with a positive attitude. She wasn't a bloom that withered away; she lived her life like a field of daylilies with new blooms every day just as beautiful as the day before!"

Survivors include her sisters, Wanda Kay Mitchell (Phil) of Springfield, and Marilyn Sue Sunderland of Riverton, Utah; nephews Brian Lockwood (Roxanne), Chris Lockwood (Kristi), and Chadd Ashby; niece Michelle Ashby Brown (Danny) and numerous great-nieces and great-nephews.

Carolyn was preceded in death by her parents, Annie Mildred and Harold Glenn Kemper, her brother, Billie Dale Kemper, and her great-nephew John Eli Lockwood.

Memorials are suggested to the Parkinson’s Foundation.