All posts by Submitted Story

Obituary: Lloyd M. Seifert

Submitted by Cheney Witt Funeral Home

Lloyd M. Seifert, age 88, resident of Fort Scott, Kan., died Saturday, July 29, 2017, at Medicalodge of Fort Scott.

He was born July 9, 1929, in Wooldridge, Mo., the son of Herman John Seifert and Emma Heckerman Seifert. Lloyd served in the U.S. Army during the Korean War. He married Bonnie Brizendine on October 3, 1954, in Bunceton, Mo. He worked for the Katy Railroad for 36 years. He greatly enjoyed the railroad and worked everywhere between St. Louis and Houston. He enjoyed spending time on his wooded property, including hunting and fishing. He loved spending time with his family, whether hunting and fishing with the grandkids or attending their activities. He enjoyed the simple pleasures of life, from push mowing and cheering for the KC Royals to cracking pecans and walnuts to give away. He was a member of the V.F.W. Post #1165, serving with the honor guard, and the Trinity Lutheran Church.

Survivors include his wife Bonnie of the home; two sons, Kelly Seifert and wife Sharon, Sioux Falls, S.D., and Doug Seifert and wife Nancy, St. Peters, Mo.; one sister, Emma Lou Stover, Boonville, Mo.; four grandchildren, Dr. Clinton Seifert and wife Laura, Mitchell, S.D., Kyle Seifert, Mission, Kan., Amanda Campeau and husband C.J., Ballwin, Mo., and Austin Seifert, St. Peters, Mo.; five great grandchildren, Josie, Daniel and Sadie Seifert and Carter and Eli Campeau; and numerous nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by a brother, Otho Seifert; four sisters, Lucille Smith, Loretta Rainsbarger, Gertrude Huebee, and infant Julia Seifert; and his parents.

Vicar Michael Apfel will conduct funeral services at 10 a.m. Tuesday, August 1, at the Cheney Witt Chapel. Burial will follow in the U. S. National Cemetery. Military honors will be provided by the Olson Frary Burkhart Post #1165 V.F.W. The family will receive friends from 5 until 7 Monday evening at the Chapel. Memorials are suggested to Trinity Lutheran Church and may be left in care of the Cheney Witt Chapel, P.O. Box 347, 201 S. Main, Ft. Scott, KS 66701. Words of remembrance may be submitted to the online guestbook at

Obituary: Merle F. Hart, Jr.

Submitted by Cheney Witt Funeral Home

Merle F. Hart, Jr., age 83, a resident of Fort Scott, Kansas, passed away Saturday, July 29, 2017, at his home.

He was born February 13, 1934, in Chetopa, Kan., the son of Merle F. Hart and Martha Lou Bradley Hart. Merle graduated from the Fort Scott High School with the Class of 1952. He later enlisted with the United States Air Force. He married Dolores Juanita Daum on June 5, 1955, in Fort Scott. Following his service with the Air Force, Merle returned to Fort Scott and began a 26 year career with the United States Post Office. Merle enjoyed hunting, reading and attending estate auctions.

Survivors include his wife, Dolores, of the home; three daughters, Candy Hart and husband, Craig Dunn, of St. Paul, Minn., Kim Hart-McBride and husband, Ron McBride, of Olathe, Kan. and Kelly Hart and husband, John Lane, also of Olathe; two grandchildren, Jacob Hart-Lane, of Augusta, Kan., and Aubrey McBride, of Emporia, Kan. Also surviving are a brother, Kenneth Hart and wife, Evangeline, of Garland, Kan., and a sister, June Christy and husband, Gene, of Girard, Kan. He was preceded in death by his parents.

Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Wednesday, August 2, at the Cheney Witt Chapel. Burial will follow in the Memory Gardens Cemetery where military honors will be conducted by the Olson Frary Burkhart Post #1165 Veterans of Foreign Wars. The family will receive friends on Wednesday from 10 a.m. until service time at the Cheney Witt Chapel. Memorials are suggested to the National Rifle Association or the Fort Scott Public Library and may be left in care of the Cheney Witt Chapel, 201 S. Main, P.O. Box 347, Ft. Scott, KS 66701. Words of remembrance may be submitted to the online guestbook


KState Extension: Reflections of County Fair

Submitted by: Carla Nemecek, Southwind District Director & Agent

My 20th county fair is officially in the books. I spent the first seven years in Haskell County, Kan., and have been in Allen County since 2005. When the Southwind District formed in 2010, I was given the privilege of working with two more counties, Neosho and Bourbon. As one of your District Extension Agents, I can tell you that it is truly a relief to be on the backside of the county fair and it gives me an opportunity to reflect and think about those folks who help make our 4-H program successful.

I don’t want to bore you with the details of planning and getting ready for the county fair, but rather take an opportunity to thank those key individuals who take the time to volunteer and make our county fairs successful. Each of the counties in the Southwind District have specific key people who make sure our kids are getting an education in their projects and having fun at the same time. In Neosho County, the livestock leaders conducted project meetings that drew in youth to the fairgrounds, teaching them about livestock husbandry and showmanship to prepare them for the upcoming contests. I admire the time and dedication these leaders give to the kids and I know it takes away from an evening or a weekend at home with family, yet they give to our 4-H program time and again. In Bourbon County, members of the fair board built a new covered pavilion and dedicated it to a long-time Friend of 4-H. The pavilion was used for folks to gather during the fair and the 4-H dance was held there, too. This is an addition to the fairgrounds that will be a valuable resource for many years. In Allen County, not only did we try a completely new fair schedule, but we were also given financial support from County Commissioners to repair and rebuild structures on the fairgrounds that will be used for generations to come. Phase one of this five-year project saw a much needed new roof on the sheep and goat barn. I also have to say thank you to the Livestock Boosters who make sure that all of our 4-H youth who are members in good standing receive additional premiums for their livestock projects.

The Southwind District also had the good fortune to hire summer interns in each county. Dacey worked in Fort Scott and hosted a barn quilt workshop which resulted in many barn quilts being displayed in each county. Kendle worked in Erie and organized a much needed photography clinic to teach youth how to take better photos for personal and 4-H use. In Iola, we worked with Zoey who prepared a tie blanket workshop and then donated those blankets to Hope Unlimited.

On a personal note, I also want to thank my family and close friends who help me get through the fair season. Without their support through all hours of the day, there is no way to mark off every item on the daily “to do” list. I have an amazing job, but it is really a community of people who make it fun. Thank you all!!

Scavenger Hunt and Selfie Contest to be held at Fort Scott NHS

Submitted by the Fort Scott National Historic Site

Join in the fun at the Old Fort before it is time to go back to school. Fort Scott NHS announces its first-ever “Selfie” contest, going on now. You can win $50 just for snapping a picture of yourself at the Fort. Also coming up, the Fort is holding its second annual Scavenger Hunt; new and improved and twice as much fun as last year. The Scavenger Hunt takes place on Saturday, August 5 at 1 p.m. Prizes will be awarded for the first and second place teams.

2016 Scavenger Hunt

The Fort Scott NHS Youth Engagement Team has created a brand new “Selfie Station” on the second floor of the Dragoon barracks, complete with frontier era costumes. Using Instagram, take your selfie there in costume for a chance to win the 1st Place prize of $50. If dressing up isn’t your thing, you can still take a selfie anywhere on the Old Fort grounds without the costumes. Non-costume selfies are eligible to win a $25 prize. Either way, be sure to submit your selfie to Instagram, tag @fortscottnhs in the caption, and include the hashtag #fortscottselfiecontest2017. The winner of the Selfie Contest will be announced at the conclusion of the Scavenger Hunt on August 5, although winners do not need to be present to win.

Be sure to join in the exciting and family friendly Old Fort Scavenger Hunt as a last hurrah of summer. The Hunt will begin at 1 p.m. and end at 3 p.m. on Saturday, August 5, 2017. All participants are encouraged to show up 10 minutes early with their cell phone or camera. Contestants will be given a list of clues directing them to certain items that tell a story about the rich history of the site. Participants will then take photos of the corresponding items. The winning team/individual will receive a $50 gift card, with $25 awarded to the second place finishers.

This fun event is being hosted by the Youth Engagement Team at Fort Scott National Historic Site in partnership with the Friends of the Fort. Thanks go to the Friends of the Fort for sponsoring the prizes. Call the Fort, 620-223- 0310, with questions or for more information.

A Multi-Sensory Playground for Fort Scott

“Build a new playground at the Mercy of Frank Halsey”

Presented by The Healthy Bourbon County Action Team

Underwritten by Janet Irby Braun and Family

The Healthy Bourbon County Action Team, as part of Fort Scott Community Visioning, is sponsoring a community event on Saturday, August 19, at Liberty Theatre to honor local community champion, Frank Halsey, for his grass roots initiative to build mountain biking and hiking trails.  While not alone in his efforts, his leadership demonstrates how one person can be an agent of change, engage community members, and increase awareness of healthy lifestyle. Environmental challenges tend to be strongest in low-income communities and community perception results show that Bourbon County is no different.

In addition, the Healthy Bourbon County Action Team has partnered with the Youth Activities Team to seek additional resources and construct a Multi-Sensory Playground that will be accessible by all youth, regardless of ability, and meet therapeutic needs for children with special needs. The children and families in our community could benefit from safe, inclusive, places to play. An inclusive recreation area is desperately needed in the Fort Scott area.

Currently we have families in our community who are forced to drive 45 miles to the nearest adaptive park. One of many families personally impacted is that of Matt and Cherie Witt, the parents of a 6-year-old son with autism spectrum disorder with significant sensory needs. They have shared their story:

We want to take this opportunity to introduce ourselves and explain why we believe an all-inclusive playground with adaptations for children with special needs would provide a much-needed asset to our community. Prior to the birth of our child and his subsequent diagnosis, we were not unsympathetic, but, nevertheless, highly uninformed of the vast number of children with special needs in our community and the lack of resources available to them. In the four years since our diagnosis, we have learned much and now realize to a far greater extent the struggles of parents of children with exceptionalities to find healthy and appropriate recreational activities for their children. Our children, much like their typically developing peers, want and need to simply have fun. There is no better environment for these children to thrive than playing alongside their typical peers. It is our understanding that this park would promote inclusion of all types of children with varying needs rather than separating them by ability or physical skill.  

Our home town of Fort Scott, Kan., is a small community with many children with special needs but few resources to engage them. As parents of a son with autism, we realize the financial burdens that come with the territory. Many times, parents feel pressure, and rightly so, to direct financial resources toward the many types of therapy our children require, leaving little for recreation. Furthermore, we have many low-income families dealing with these sorts of problems whose children do not have access to opportunities for fun activities. Moreover, Fort Scott has an exceptionally high rate of children with autism. For these young people, a means to meet sensory issues is essential for them to learn, develop and cope with life. An adaptive playground would serve children in each of these categories. We would love to see all these children laughing, playing and socializing the same as their typical peers.

Recent studies have shown that as a society, we tend to place disproportionate emphasis on academics over physical activity for very young children, much to their detriment. Many believe the result is a lack of social skills such as sharing and turn-taking and an increase in sensory issues. Active, free play is an invaluable learning experience. Maneuvering the environment with its variances in terrain and experiencing all the sights, sounds and feelings of the great outdoors fully engages the senses. These experiences may be even more important for children with special needs who, depending on their diagnosis, may already be at a social or physical disadvantage. A play area constructed with these children in mind, would give them a chance to spread their wings and strengthen their minds and bodies in ways otherwise impossible. 

There is no better investment than one in our youth. We believe that children with special needs can become active, responsible members of our community. We would love to see them benefit from a safe, friendly environment to promote the life skills they will need to live a productive life and have a little fun at the same time.

You can show your support and purchase your tax-deductible tickets online at or at the Fort Scott Area Chamber of Commerce 231 E. Wall Street Fort Scott, KS 66701. Ticket are $50 each.

Community Foundation to Accept Grand Applications in August

The Fort Scott Area Community Foundation is thrilled to announce that the amount of grants available for the upcoming 2017/2018 cycle totals $30,000, exceeding last year’s total by $9,000.

2016 Grant Recipients

Thanks to the generosity of all who contributed to the FSACF general fund, the interest accrued will allow the grant committee more opportunities to benefit the 501(c)3 applicants who meet the qualifications.

Monies granted to the 12 beneficiaries from last year’s cycle were used for a variety of causes, including helping to purchase a 3D mammography machine for Mercy Hospital, providing benefits to cancer patients, assisting families in purchasing swimming pool passes, and funding classes for CASA volunteers.

The FSACF 2017 Grant Applications will be released on Tuesday, August 1, at which time they will appear on the FSACF website or may be picked up in person at the Chamber of Commerce, 231 E. Wall. Nonprofits such as churches, governmental entities, or organizations with a 501(c)3 status are encouraged to apply.

Applications are due by Tuesday, August 29. Acceptance and declination letters will be mailed on Tuesday, October 24. Grants will be awarded at the Foundation’s Chamber Coffee held in the Landmark Bank lobby at Third and Main at 8 A.M. on Thursday, November 2.

Hit the Bricks Tickets Still Available

Submitted by Tina Rockhold, Mercy Hospital

Organizers of this Friday’s inaugural Hit the Bricks Wine Stroll, Art Walk and Blane Howard concert say tickets are still available. Add in a weather forecast that predict temperatures in the mid 80s and it’s a perfect combination for a night in downtown Fort Scott.

The Hit the Bricks event kicks off at 5 p.m. and has something for everyone to enjoy. Main Street will be blocked between 1st and 2nd streets for the event from early afternoon until about 8:30 p.m.

The regularly scheduled Friday night music at the pavilion will continue as usual.

The free art walk, coordinated by the Bourbon County Arts Council, is open to the public. Over 15 artists from near and far will fill the sidewalks of Main Street with their artwork and have items for sale. Food vendors will have items for sale as well.

The wine stroll check in begins at 5 p.m. at the Beaux Arts Centre located at 102 S. National.

During the stroll, pre-registered participants or those 21 years and older (valid ID required) who purchase a $25 wrist band at the Beaux Arts Centre that evening may have a maximum of 15 samples of wines from the six featured Kansas vineyards including Fort Scott’s very own Vinedo del Alamo. Other wineries and vineyards participating in the stroll include Aubrey Vineyards, Overland Park; Flustered Blonde Vineyard and Winery, Parsons; Fuga Winery, Waverly; Smoky Hill Vineyard and Winery, Topeka; and Vogel Family Vineyards, Galena.

Wineries will also have unopened bottles of wine available for purchase.

Cost for the wine stroll is $25 and includes a commemorative wine glass and tote bag for bottled wine purchases.

The Fort Scott trolley will be available in 30-minute intervals to transport participants from the check–in location to Main Street between 5 p.m. and 8 p.m.

Beginning at 8:30, music lovers can dance the night away with a concert by Nashville-based country music sensation Blane Howard at Liberty Theatre. Concert tickets are $35 each. Tickets will also be available at the door that evening. Seating for the concert is general admission.

Advance tickets for the stroll and concert are strongly recommended. Patrons can save $10 if they purchase both the wine stroll and concert tickets for $50.

Tickets are available online at

Proceeds from the Hit the Bricks event will benefit the Mercy Health Foundation Fort Scott, a nonprofit 501(c)3 corporation which supports programming and equipment at Mercy Hospital Fort Scott. For more details about the Hit the Bricks Wine Stroll, Art Walk and Blane Howard Concert, call the Mercy Health Foundation office at 620-223- 8094.