In Memory of

Douglas

Eugene

Klempke

Obituary for Douglas Eugene Klempke

Douglas Eugene Klempke, age 85, of Holts Summit, Mo., passed away Thursday, March 14, 2024, at home surrounded by his loving family.

He was born on May 28, 1938, in Minneapolis, Minnesota, one of nine children born to Gustave and Blanche (Grotem) Klempke. He was the first generation of Klempke's born in the United States as his father came to America in 1904 at the age of five.

At the age of 14 years old, Barbara Ann Schommer caught his eye. They were married on October 6, 1955. He enlisted in the United States Army June 1, 1955, as a Food Service Specialist. He took immense pride in everything he did. He served two tours in Vietnam where he earned many accolades including the Bronze Star. His service culminated in retirement as a Master Sergeant on April 1, 1976.

Transitioning from military life, Douglas settled in Jefferson City after leaving Fort Leonard Wood, where he assumed the role of Food Service Supervisor at Church Farm for the Department of Corrections. Utilizing the opportunities afforded by the GI Bill, he pursued his passion for auto mechanics, enrolling at Nichols Career Center. When not immersed in work or studies, he found solace in tinkering with cars and engines. He and his son Robert rebuilt Larry's 1952 Willy's Jeep. He also spent many hours with his grandson, Nathan, rebuilding Nate's Mustang 5.0. He was a devoted homebody, taking particular joy tending to his yard, often found cruising on one of his many John Deere zero turn mowers. He always had a spare of almost everything just in case one broke down.

An enthusiast of yard and garage sales, Douglas was always on the lookout for a good deal whether he needed that item or not. A loyal supporter of the Denver Broncos and NASCAR, he found relaxation in following his favorite teams and drivers.

Rooted in his heritage as a first-generation American from Germany and Norwegian descent, Douglas held dear the gatherings of family, where many memories were made just sitting together in his driveway. Known for his meticulous attention to detail, he approached life with a clear sense of black and white, leaving little room for ambiguity. His steadfastness, his love for his passions, and his unwavering pride in all he did, endeared him to those who knew him. Douglas leaves behind a legacy of dedication, precision, and warmth that will be dearly missed by all whose lives he touched.

Survivors include the love of his life Barbara Klempke and their children, Dean Klempke of Eldon, Mo., Lawrence Klempke of Jefferson City, Mo., Robert Klempke of Lorton, Va., Vickie Coon of Eldon, Mo., Anne Klempke of Jefferson City, Mo., nine grandchildren, Dean Klempke Jr., Donna Pinkston, Nathan Klempke, Brandon Klempke, Bryan Klempke, Garrett Klempke, Stephen Sapp, Justin Sapp, Michelle Maldonado; 16 great grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents; one son, William Klempke; and one grandson, Michael Coon.

Private family services will be held at a later date.

Funeral arrangements are under the care of Freeman Mortuary, 915 Madison St, Jefferson City, MO 65101.