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Curtis R Means

February 16, 2023

Curtis Ross Means passed away peacefully on February 16, 2023, at the age of 91. Curtis leaves a legacy of three children, eight grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren, with two more great-grandchildren on the way.

Curtis was born on October 9, 1931, in Topeka, Kansas to Harry and Olive (Weeks) Means. He was the youngest of three children. The family relocated every two years, following his father’s work as a depot agent for the Union Pacific Railroad. If it was up to them, Curtis and his siblings Harry and Marjorie would have chosen Asherville, Kansas as a home base. The children ran wild through unpaved streets until they heard their mother’s police whistle (two long blows, then one short).

Curtis joined the Air Force in 1951. During the Korean War, he served as a high-speed Morse Code Intercept Operator with the 1st Communications Squadron at Nagasaki Air Force Base.  After the war, he transferred to the 450th Communications Squadron at Foster Air Force Base in Texas. He enlisted in the Air Force Reserves in 1955. Curtis was awarded the Korean Service Medal, U.N. Service Medal, and the National Defense Service Medal before being honorably discharged in 1962. He went on to work as a Supervisory Auditor with the U.S. Department of Agriculture Office of Inspector General for over twenty years.

While in the reserves, Curtis attended Kansas State Teachers’ College (now Emporia State University). He graduated in 1961 with a degree in Business Management. It was there Curtis met the love of his life, Rose Mary Harms (Rosie). He picked her up for their first date in a Ford Model A Tudor Sedan that he fixed up. They married in 1960 and went on to have three children.

Curtis loved cars, and the Model A was only the beginning. He also owned a 49’ Mercury with suicide doors, a Studebaker Golden Hawk, a 69’ AMX, and a legendary 70’ Ford Falcon that he drove for over 365,000 miles.

Even more than cars, Curtis loved Rosie. He stood by her side as she battled serious, life-long health issues, and faithfully worked towards her well-being throughout their 53-year marriage.

Curtis was well known in his family for creatively turning a phrase. If you asked him how he was doing, he’d probably answer something like, “Just trying to keep body and soul together.” Although he is greatly missed, his family is comforted in knowing that his soul has found a permanent dwelling in heaven alongside Rosie.

Curtis was predeceased by his wife Rose Mary (Harms) Means; his parents, Harry and Olive (Weeks) Means; and his brother Harry Means. He is survived by his sister Marjorie (Means) Boston; son Steve Means and wife Genesis; daughter Karen (Means) Abernathy and husband Fred; son Bill Means and wife Kim; grandchildren: Ryan, Rachel, Kristina, Phillip, Dillon, Amanda, Abraham, and Mary; and great-grandchildren: Henry, Ryker, Bodhi, and Ender. He just missed meeting two great-grandchildren in the making.

The family is so very grateful for the excellent care Curtis received at Rosemark Senior Living. Thanks especially to each caregiver with Rosemark and Bristol Hospice that cared for Curtis with love and kindness in his final days.

Visitations will be held 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM on March 3rd at the Petersen Family Funeral Home in Newton, Kansas. Graveside funeral services and burial begin at 2:00 PM on March 3rd at Grace Hill Mennonite Church & Cemetery in Whitewater, Kansas, reception to follow. Family and friends are all welcome. Given the significant impact Curtis’s military service had on his life, in lieu of flowers, donations in his memory can be made to the Wounded Warrior Project here.

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15 thoughts on “Curtis R Means

  1. Dad will be sorely missed along with a lot of his encouraging sayings:

    “You did really well.”
    “It’s just another day out here in the west…”
    “Everything is copacetic…”
    “That’s a double-clutcher!”
    “Boy howdy, that’s really somethin!”

    You’re “going right on down the road” “blowin’ the doors off everything” now and i can’t wait to see you in heaven someday. Right now I’m “betwixt and between” just waitin’…

  2. A wonderful uncle to me as a teenager I was able to go on a few trips to Wyoming with him on business and he gave me a suit to wear in his meeting as I was able as a fifteen year old boy to attend in the summer and go camping with the family in the Rocky Mtns He was a very positive role model for me and would show me mechanics on his vehicle’s in Littleton Colorado home garage Uncle Curt and Rosie would come visit in Kansas and I would ride back to Colorado with them and spend a couple weeks in the summer there and take a greyhound bus back our whole family was visiting once was treated to a grand tour of the Rocky Mtns with uncle Curt leading the way in the new Ambassador AMC station wagon in 1968 he gave us a several day tour when the family Buick invicta had cracked head in the summer and while he was visiting began to remove the hood and began removal of the part to replace it a GS 13 on vacation in 98 degree heat he was a amazing uncle but his positive example of a man will always be with me

  3. Our family is so sorry for your loss!! Growing up in the same church I feel like we were all family. Now he is with Rosie, and our Heavenly Father!! Big hugs to you all❤️❤️🙏

  4. Kathleen Boston McCune, niece and ardent admirer of a man who was the best of any man I have ever met. Uncle Curtie gave what he could to whomever needed anything and expected only a hug in return. He let me babysit my 3 cousins while Rosie was in the hospital for almost a month and trusted me to be their caretaker all that time. Stevie, Karen and Billie were like live dollies for me at age 18 and I loved providing their hugs, as well as food, clean clothes, baths, etc. all babes from 5 to 2 need. When Rosie came home, she was so thankful I was there and we had sharing time as I was a new newlywed and expecting myself. I’m glad they are together again and send hugs to Cousins Steven, William and Kat and all family who will miss a man who most assuredly fulfilled why the Lord sent him to Earth for this lifetime. God Bless all and Amen.

  5. More sayings:
    “There I was, 10 against thousands!”
    “I just want to say a word about Texas.”
    “Oh, it’ll burn” (after I asked why there was a toilet seat in the fireplace

  6. Curt was like a second dad to me. I hung around often with Steve, ate Rosie’s giant pancakes and worked on countless cars, small motorcycles, and bicycles there. I later lived with the Means family while I earned my first degree at ACC. So many great memories of laughter around the dinner table. Sometimes Curt laughed so hard, he cried. We will laugh together again in heaven dear friend. I will miss you until that day comes.

  7. I never got to know your dad Bill but from what you’ve told me over the years he had a very full life which is all anyone of us can ask to be blessed with.

  8. We are so sorry for your loss…may you and your family get comfort from your many happy memories. Keeping all in our prayers 🙏🙏💕💕 Hugs and love always.

  9. “You did really well” Curtis ! I was honored to have met you, another of our great veterans, and a fellow USAF Member! Rest well, good and faithful servant !

  10. So grateful to the Lord for getting to know and spending time with my father in law for almost 5 years since I came to USA. He reminded me of my dad : a very loving, hard working and dedicated husband and father to his family. Miss you and love you always. You will be in our memories and hearts forever.

  11. I’m proud of all you accomplished in life dad. I’m thankful for your patience, your generosity, your kindness and you perseverance. Mostly I’m grateful I’m your son. I miss you!

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