Kenneth M. “Kenny” Siegel, 91, of Mandan, died peacefully on November 26, 2022. An aggressive brain tumor was discovered just ten days earlier. He lived an active and full life up to his diagnosis.
Mass of Christian burial will be held 10:30 AM on Friday, December 2, 2022, at Spirit of Life Catholic Church, Mandan, with Fr. Keith Streifel as celebrant. Burial will follow at the North Dakota Veterans Cemetery.
Visitation will be held at Buehler-Larson Funeral Home, Mandan, from 5 to 7 PM on Thursday, December 1, 2022, followed by a Prayer Service at 7 PM. Visitation will continue one hour prior to the service at the church on Friday.
Kenny was born north of Mandan in Harmon Bottoms on November 27, 1930, the seventh of fourteen children to Jacob and Monica (Matz) Siegel. On March 16, 1948, he enlisted in the US Navy, serving abroad on the aircraft carrier USS Leyte (CV 32) during the Korean war as a Machinist Mate. He was honorably discharged on November 13, 1952.
They began their life together in Seattle where Kenny worked for Boeing until they returned to Mandan in 1959. There Kenny built homes and did drywall to support his passion for fishing and hunting. All you had to do was ask him who was the best angler, and he would happily let you know that he and his partner Tom Schmidt won the North Dakota Governor’s Cup Walleye Tournament twice.
Kenny and Jean were constant supporters of young Mandan Brave athletes for decades. They rarely missed an event for their children, grandchildren, or great-grandchildren. Kenny was known to speak with near embarrassing pride about all of them.
Behind a gruff manner that fooled no one, especially if they saw the way his grandchildren and great-grandchildren could melt him, was a man with a great sense of humor. A committed husband and a caring man that made lifelong friendships – he had hunting buddies, fishing pals, pinochle partners and Monday evening poker friends that looked like they came from central casting for Grumpy Old Men. He was also a proud lifetime member of the American Legion and Elks clubs. He loved volunteering in Medora and delivered visitor guides across the state for nearly twenty years.
Kenny made sure the breakfast crew at Ohms Cafe knew the bacon had to be extra crispy and the proper way to cut the toast. Steaks were always undercooked for Kenny’s taste. He would see the Medora Musical multiple times each year, but would tell the producer, “The show is OK, but there is too much music.”
Ken was preceded in death by twelve siblings and his parents.
He will be deeply missed by his wife of 67 years Arlita (Jean), his four children: Kenny Siegel, Laurie (Randy) Hatzenbuhler, Mark (Lisa) Siegel, & Mike (Kristi) Siegel; three grandchildren: Gina (Tyler) Huck, Jordan (Nicole) Hatzenbuhler, & Sammy (Josh) Carrier; five great-grandchildren: Reese and Dawson Huck, Reagan and Maxwell Hatzenbuhler, & Jayce Siegel; and his sister, Donna Vogel.
The family prefers memorials to the Theodore Roosevelt Medora Foundation's Veterans Endowment, PO Box 1696, Bismarck, ND 58502, or Special Olympics ND, 2616 South 26th Street, Grand Forks, ND 58201. Send condolences to Jean Siegel, c/o Laurie Hatzenbuhler, 115 Juniper Drive, Bismarck, ND 58503.