Bernie Joel (BJ) Kuhn, 87, Monroe City, Mo., passed away at 10:45 p.m., Thursday, March 31, 2022, at his home in Monroe City.
Bernie was born Jan. 31, 1935, in Gurdon, Ark., to Albert Burton Kuhn and Josie Virginia (Brown) Kuhn. He was married to Laura Joost-Kuhn on July 24, 1998, in Dubuque, Iowa. She survives.
Other survivors include his son, Gary (Cindy) Kuhn, Katy, Texas; daughter, Marla (Brad)Passenger, Creswell, Ore.; step-daughter, Kelley (Walt)McWilliams, Raeford, N.C.; step-son, John Charles Tompkins, Jr., Knoxville, Tenn.; step-son, Robert (Angela) Tompkins, Canton, Ga.; step-son, Nick (Amy) Tompkins, Hannibal, Mo.; and brothers, Jimmie Kuhn, Daleville, Ala.; Dean Kuhn, Christmas Valley, Ore.; and Max (Clara) Kuhn, Florence, Ore. He was very loved by his grandchildren, Kristen, Brandon, Derek, Darren, Julia, Emily, Jordan, Kevin, Michael, Christopher, Nicholas, Silas and Josie; 17 great-grandchildren, and a great-great-grandchild.
Bernie was preceded in death by his parents; brother, Bob Kuhn; sister, Geneva Norstrom; and a son, Michael Kuhn.
Bernie proudly served his country in the United States Army, stationed in Germany. He was very involved in International Union of Operating Engineers, Local 701, Portland, Ore.
He was a member of the American Legion and received his 50 year pin in 2015. He was a life member of Florence Lodge 107 of A.F and A.M, Florence, and he received his 50 year award in 2015.
Professionally, at the end of his career, Bernie worked as a heavy equipment crane operator in the Persian Gulf, the Indian Ocean, and the North Sea for 15 years.
When Bernie was younger, he enjoyed hunting in Oregon. While in Oregon, he raised cattle and ostriches. Bernie loved to wear his snake, ostrich and aardvark cowboy boots, but if he was not wearing his boots, he had his running shoes on.
In track and field, he medaled in the Senior Olympics, specializing in the 50, 100, 200, and 400 meters. He broke the record in 2015, for the 50 meter sprint for the 80-84 age group, in New Mexico, and enjoyed running the track at Monroe City High School. He was very proud of his pickup trucks.
In retirement, he enjoyed reading westerns and mystery novels, as well as watching the Green Bay Packers, the St. Louis Cardinals, and his great-grand children’s sporting events.
Among the happiest times, were the many events he and Laura attended as members of the Friends of Bill W.
Above everything else, Bernie loved spending time with his family and friends.
Bernie was a faithful Protestant.
A memorial service with full military honors by Emmette J. Shields American Legion Post #55 will be held at 5 p.m., Thursday, April 7, at the Clover Road Christian Church in Hannibal. Reverend Tim Goodman will officiate.
On Thursday, from 5:30 to 7 p.m., at Clover Road Christian Church, friends and family are invited to Bernie’s celebration of life.
Arrangements for cremation are under the direction of the James O’Donnell Life Celebration Home in Monroe City.
Memorials may be made to Shriners Hospitals for Children, 2900 N. Rocky Point Dr., Tampa, Fla. 33607.