Edward “Ed” Matson Lundgren, 88, of Spring Hill, Kansas, passed away April 18, 2019 at his home. Visitation 10:00 am with service at 11:00 am all on Wed., April 24, 2019 at Bruce Funeral Home, Spring Hill, Kansas (913) 592-2244. Burial follows at 1:00 pm at Johnson County Memorial Gardens, Overland Park, Kansas. Memorial contributions may be made to a charity of your choice. Condolences may be left at www.brucefuneralhome.com
Edward Matson Lundgren was born June 28, 1930 in Kansas City, Missouri to Edward B. and Anna Linnea Lundgren. In 1936 the family moved to Overland Park, Kansas. He attended Overland Park Grade School and Shawnee Mission High School, graduating in 1948. Growing up his favorite team sports were baseball and basketball. His baseball talents were honed on organized teams in summer leagues, as well as on the ball diamond that the family built on the land next to their home on Hardy. He played basketball on his high school and college teams, and continued playing into his 40’s on Bendix recreation league teams. He attended William Jewell College from 1948 to 1950 when he was activated into Naval Squadron VF-884 at the Olathe Naval Air Station. He served two years during the Korean War stationed at NAS San Diego and at sea on the Aircraft Carrier USS Boxer. On November 15, 1950 while on leave from the Navy, he married Mary E. (Beth) Bibens, his college sweetheart, in Kansas City, Missouri. In 2018 they celebrated their 68th wedding anniversary. For his service in the Navy he was awarded the Korean War Medal with One Star. Through the years, Ed (and Beth) maintained close ties with his Navy friends, and helped coordinate reunions for Naval Squadron VF-884 from the early 1970s into the 2000’s. When his naval duty was concluded he returned to Kansas City with his wife where he attended Kansas City Junior College and the University of Missouri Kansas City. He was a member of the Lambda Chi Alpha Fraternity and Kappa Mu Epsilon honorary mathematics fraternity.
He was a metallurgical engineer and was employed at Westinghouse Corporation, Bendix and Allied Signal. He was one of a select group of seven Robotics Engineers at Allied Signal when in 1985 he suffered a massive head injury and was disabled. He never returned to work after the injury. With much hard work and determination, countless hours of physical and occupational therapy, and constant encouragement from his wife, he did improve. As he improved, he refocused his energy as a volunteer for several years at the Kansas Head Injury Association assisting and encouraging other brain injured individuals and their families. In 1987 the Kansas and Missouri Head Injury Association presented him with the Dick Howser Courage Award from the National Head Injury Association. In 1990 Ed and Beth received Special Recognition from the Association for their many hours of dedicated volunteerism.
He moved to this home south of Spring Hill in 1974. Ed had many hobbies and interests. He was the grandson of a cabinet maker, and so he inherited excellent wood working skills. He took great pride in making gifts, small furniture, bookcases and anything made of wood for his children and grandchildren. He was a natural electrician, plumber and finish carpenter, finishing three houses from 1958 through 1974, from rough-in on, all while holding down a full time job. He owned an Arc Welder and for over 40 years repaired implements and created numerous gates, bracing, swings and even a backyard zip line for the grandchildren.
He was a member of the Society of Manufacturing Engineers, the Miami County Historical Society, the Broadway Baptist Church and the Marlborough United Methodist Church in Kansas City, Missouri. He served on the Spring Hill Fire Board, Marlborough Methodist Church official Board and the House Board of the William Jewell Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity. From 1985 onward, he was a major breeder of African big-horned cattle in the United States and he served on the Board of Directors of the Ankole Watusi International Registry. As a result of countless hours devoted to this cause he is credited with helping to preserve the breed for posterity.
Ed was a loving and devoted husband; a great father and grandfather. A man who was infinitely patient with his children and grandchildren, reading them books, playing games and teaching life lessons. Ed loved the outdoors and was happiest building fences and corrals, caring for his horses and cattle, mowing pastures and wielding his chainsaw on unruly trees.
He was preceded in death by his parents and his sister, Helen Catherine Brooks of Greencastle, Indiana. He is survived by a brother, Robert D. Lundgren (Betty), Tulsa, OK. Of his immediate family, he is survived by his wife of 68 years, Beth, and their three children and their spouses; Becky (C.G. Weir) Lundgren, Dave (Nanette) Lundgren and Kelly (John) Fritz. He is also survived by five grandchildren and their spouses; Jason (Mikealee) Lundgren, Jen (Jeff) Johnson, Liz Fritz, Kathryn (Mike) Koppe, and Grace Anne Fritz. He also had one great-grandchild, Cora Estelle Koppe.