Kenneth Cleeton


Kenneth Dee Cleeton, 93, passed away at the Heritage Hall Skilled Nursing facility in Centralia on February 4, 2024, surrounded by his family. Visitation was held on Feb. 6 and funeral services were held the following day.

Kenneth was born April 8, 1930 near Centralia to Joseph Francis Cleeton and Wilda Irene (Berrey) Cleeton. Kenneth married Lora Mae Cundiff on October 29, 1953. They celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary on October 28, 2023. To this union was born one daughter, Sharon Elaine Cleeton.

Kenneth graduated from Martinsburg High School in May of 1948. He then joined the United States Air Force, receiving his basic training at San Antonio, Texas. After basic training, Kenneth was stationed at Scott Air Force Base (Ill.), where he was an instructor in the radio school. Kenneth served from 1948-1952 and was a sergeant in the Air Force.

For many years, Kenneth owned his own business in Montgomery City -- Cleeton’s Radio and TV. After retiring from his business, he was the director of senior centers at both Montgomery and Warren counties. He served as the lay minister of the Mineola United Methodist Church for 50-plus years. He also served other churches in the area. He was a volunteer firefighter and a founding member of the Montgomery City Optimist Club. Additionally, he sponsored a bowling league in Montgomery City.

Kenneth is survived by his wife, Lora Mae, of the home in Montgomery City; his daughter, Sharon Elaine (Cleeton) Johnson and husband Kenneth Johnson; his granddaughter, Michelle Marie Johnson (Mandrell) Copeland and husband Ronald Copeland, Jr.; his great grandchildren: Austin Copeland, Colton Mandrell and wife Katlyn, Terry Copeland, Cassadie Copeland and Jacob Mandrell; and great-great grandson, Weston Copeland. Kenneth is also survived by his sisters Bonnie Garver of Sapulpa, Okla., and Ethel Wilkerson of Farber (Audrain County).

Kenneth was preceded in death by his parents; his stepmother, Catherene (Harding, Pulis) Cleeton; his brothers, William Cleeton and Francis Cleeton; and his sisters, Jewel Secrease, Hazel Wieberg and Stella Sanders.

The service for Kenneth was officiated by John Baker, lay pastor of Mineola United Methodist Church, with the committal service by Kenneth Johnson, with burial at the Sunrise Memorial Gardens cemetery. Casketbearers for Kenneth were Ray Secrease, Bill Fennewald, Eddie Cobb, Michael Wilkinson, Bret Davis and Ron Copeland Jr. Honorary casketbearers were Joe Secrease, Colton Mandrell and Jacob Mandrell. Kenneth was loved by his family, his church and the community. And he was loved by them.

In lieu of flowers the family requests that donations, in memory of Kenneth, be payable to the Mineola United Methodist Church or the Montgomery County Senior Center or Sunrise Memorial Gardens cemetery, in care of Schlanker Funeral Home, 207 Danville Road, Montgomery City, Missouri, 63361.