Dennis Leroy McKenzie

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Dennis Leroy McKenzie, 70, of Nevada, Mo., passed away Sept. 18, 2015, at the Olathe Medical Center, in Olathe, Kan. He was born July 16, 1945, in Nevada, the son of Cecil Claude and Mabel Ruth (Shields) McKenzie. On March 20, 1970, he was united in marriage to Susan Diane (Friend) McKenzie and she survives of the home.

Dennis attended school in Nevada, graduating with the Class of 1964. He excelled as a Nevada Tiger track athlete, running the mile, and held the school record until it was broken in the early 1990s. After graduation, he was employed as a home mover for a company that relocated homes that were displaced by the building of the Stockton Dam. His uncle Archie told him of a "summer job" with the railroad -- which turned out to be full-time employment with first the Missouri Pacific, then the Union Pacific. He retired in 2008 after 42 years as a railroad machine operator. When time allowed, he enjoyed hunting and fishing, horses, and taking care of his friend's cattle. He liked nearly anything that involved being outside. But nothing could compare to the love that he had for his family. Spending time with them was his greatest love and most especially he cherished spending time with his grandchildren. He was known for his kind heart and willingness to help anyone in need. He was a longtime member of both the Nevada Elks and Eagles. He will be dearly missed by those who knew and loved him.

Survivors in addition to his wife, Susan, include one son, Kenneth McKenzie and wife, Tammy, of Lansing, Kan.; three daughters, Shalene McGowan and husband, Brian, of Appleton, Ark., Rheagan Nelson, of Milo, and Erinn McKenzie and fiancÚ, Brad Guinn, of Nevada; 11 grandchildren, Kelsi, Bridget, Cristin, Cody, Bryson, Tracen, Kaylee, Connor, Caitlin, Eric, and Aaron; sisters, Gail Wysong of Nevada, Pat Campbell and husband, John, also of Nevada, and Kay Von Holten and husband, Darrel, of Lake Arlington, Texas; and several nieces, nephews, cousins, other extended family members and many friends.

Funeral services for Dennis Leroy McKenzie will be held at 10 a.m., Thursday, Sept. 24, at Ferry Funeral Home, in Nevada. Interment will follow in Welborn Cemetery, in Moundville. Visitation is scheduled from 5 to 7 p.m., Wednesday, Sept. 23, at the Ferry Funeral Home.

Contributions may be made in his memory to the Southwest Missouri Team Penner's Association in care of Ferry Funeral Home.

View obituary and send condolences online at