Edwin (Ed) Thiessen, 91, of Blue Springs, Missouri passed away on Sunday afternoon March 29, 2020, at his home under the care of Hospice with his wife Betty and his family by his side, following a long battle with cancer.
Ed was born on November 17, 1928, to Henry Thiessen and Lydia Jantz Thiessen in Newton, Kansas. He was raised in Newton until the age of 13 when his family moved to Independence, Kansas. He was one of 7 children, 5 boys and 2 girls, and worked on the family farm with his brothers when he wasn’t in school. He graduated from Independence High School in 1946. The day after graduating from high school he joined the Navy and served for two years. After discharge from the Navy he returned to Independence and met Betty McCormack who was working at the Booth Theater at the time. The couple married on July 3, 1949, in Independence. They celebrated their 70th anniversary in 2019.
Ed started working for Sinclair Oil Company in Independence in 1949, and continued there when the company was sold to Atlantic Richfield and later became British Petroleum. He retired from British Petroleum after 35 years in 1986.
He and Betty lived in Independence from the time they were married until they moved to Springfield, Missouri in 2013, where they lived until moving to Blue Springs in 2018.
He learned to fly at age 17 and loved flying his whole life. He became a member of the Independence Flying Club and the EAA. After retiring he built his own airplane. He was also a long-time member of the Independence Country Club and loved to golf. He was a member of the Independence Lions Club and he was a Mason. He spent a lot of time working and campaigning for his brother, Dan Thiessen, who was a senator from Independence to the state of Kansas for 25 years.
Survivors are his wife, Betty Thiessen of Blue Springs, Missouri, a daughter Sharon Lewis (Bob), a son Gary Thiessen (Shirley), and another daughter Pam Tindle. He had 7 grandchildren and 12 great grandchildren.
Due to the current public health crisis, a private family service will be held graveside. A Celebration of Life will be held at a later date. Donations in memory of Ed Thiessen may be made to Friends of Riverside Park or the Lions Club and can be sent to the Webb Rodrick Funeral home. To leave the family a special message of condolence, please visit www.webbrodrickfuneralhome.com.
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