• In Memory Of


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Cletus F. Haverkamp

Seneca, Kansas

09/14/1930 - 10/09/2021

Cletus F. Haverkamp, 91, of Seneca, KS passed peacefully on October 9th, 2021, at Oakley Place surrounded by his loved ones.

Clete was born on September 14, 1930 to Lawrence and Matilda “Tillie” (Holthaus) Haverkamp on the family farm near Kelly. Clete always enjoyed telling the story to his family about how he started school at the age of 4, to walk with his older sister, Armella, to school. (However, the family thinks it is because his momma wanted to get rid of two kids at once). He also liked to boast that he graduated Kelly High School at the age of 17 because of this arrangement.   

On August 4, 1954, Clete married the love of his life, Marcina Burdiek, at Sts. Peter & Paul Church. The couple began dairy farming shortly after they wed. They began milking a few cows by hand. From there the operation of milking Holstein cows grew. During this time they somehow managed to bring in six ornery children to help continue on this legacy. In 2002 Clete and Marcina “retired.” However, Clete continued to be an essential part of the now Kelly Hills Dairy. He loved puttering around in his work pickup looking for someone to help or something to do. He picked up parts, hauled cattle to the sale barn, and shuffled people from field to field. Anytime he picked someone up from the field he would say, “it’s going to cost you!” Then give you his classic chuckle.   

Clete cherished his family. When asked for advice on raising kids, he would say “if they get big you did a good job.” It made his day when a grandchild rode along to the sale barn with him, then he had an excuse to stop and get some ice cream. He also did his share of K-State tailgating and always made sure those with him made it home safely. 

Clete loved people and never knew a stranger. He never had a bad day. He was a hard worker and a sharp minded historian. He could tell you each year an event happened and if the crops were good that year. He loved Marcina’s cooking, especially her coconut cream pies. Clete treated Marcina to many dates at the Casinos which truly brought them joy. He was never shy in offering you a beer the second you came to visit, however, “you had to go to the basement to get it yourself, and him one too.”

Clete was a member of St. Bede’s Parish and the Knights of Columbus.  He also served on the Adams Township board for many years.   

Clete was preceded in death by his parents and infant twins Cletus and Marcina. He is survived by his wife of 67 years, his children Elaine (Ron) Osterhaus of Seneca, Donald (Kris) Haverkamp of Fairview, Jim (Carolyn) Haverkamp of Solomon, Dale Haverkamp of Seneca, Sandy (Bill) Koelzer of Seneca, Brian (Kristina) Haverkamp of Seneca, grandchildren Lori Boden, Will Haverkamp, Jared Osterhaus, Ryan Haverkamp, Chelsie Ronnebaum, Shayla Beck, Corey Koelzer, Kurt Haverkamp, Courtney Strathman, Ashley Hunninghake, Austin Haverkamp, Madison Rottinghaus, 25 great-grandchildren, brothers Larry Haverkamp and Lynn Haverkamp, and sisters Armella Freeman, Rosalyn Hermesch, and Connie Koelzer. 

Rosaries will be prayed at Lauer Funeral Home on Monday, October 11th at 2pm and 7pm. Mass of Christian Burial will be on Tuesday, October 12th, at 10:30am at St. Bede’s Catholic Church. Burial will be in the church cemetery. 

Memorials may be left in Cletus’s memory to the Nemaha Valley Community Hospital.


Rosaries will be prayed at 2 & 7 PM on Monday, October 11, 2021 at Lauer Funeral Home.  Mass of Christian Burial at 10:30 AM on Tuesday at St. Bede’s Catholic Church in Kelly.  Memorials may be left in his memory to NVCH.

Rosaries will be prayed at 2 & 7 PM on Monday, October 11, 2021 at Lauer Funeral Home.  Mass of Christian Burial at 10:30 AM on Tuesday at St. Bede’s Catholic Church in Kelly.  Memorials may be left in his memory to NVCH.

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  1. Susan Kay Freeman on October 11, 2021 at 9:50 am

    Dear Haverkamps,
    Your Dad was a tank, he was going to get the job done, not much stopped him. The day the sheepherders’ jack fell on his head while he was in the barn fixing a tractor was an example. He was dazed, he eventually went inside to get the blood cleaned up and he was right back at fixing the tractor later that day. Those of us (kids) watching were all numb to what we witnessed, but then that was what we expected of Cletus.
    His wry irony and wit when he summed up a bad situation always gave me insight into the takeaway lesson that was to be learned.
    How he remembered details reminded me of Grandpa Lawrence.
    He did tease a lot. I was not quite so fond of that. He was merciless.
    Cletus was a role model for sure. His tenacity, observations, wisdom, and beliefs leave a legacy to you all.

    • Jim & Vivian(Gudenkauf) Martin on October 12, 2021 at 1:17 pm

      Sorry to hear of the loss of your loved one. You are in our thoughts and prayers praying that God will give you comfort during your time of sorrow.

  2. Mischelle Cragg - Fairview, KS - Shane Cragg & Dillon Cragg - Seneca, KS on October 11, 2021 at 11:33 am

    I am so sorry for your loss. “A life well-lived leaves behind a legacy of love …” May you cherish all the beautiful memories of your loved one. Thoughts and prayers to bring you comfort during this difficult time. With Deepest Sympathy,

  3. Tom and Susan Steinlage on October 11, 2021 at 3:40 pm

    Our deepest sympathies to Aunt Marcina and Uncle Clete’s entire family. He was a great man and uncle. Know he is watching over all of you. Take care of each other and hold on to those wonderful memories! Tom & Susan (Kramer) Steinlage

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