Obituary-Francis Sweeney Megenity

Francis “Sweeney” Megenity, age 93, of Barnes, passed away at Blue Valley Health and Rehabilitation Center in Blue Rapids on Wednesday, January 17, 2024.

Sweeney was born October 3, 1930 Carl Bernard and Zelma (Jackson) Megenity. Sweeney was born in the home of his Megenity Grandparents in Effingham, KS. The family lived in Effingham until 1942, when Sweeney was 12 years old and they moved to Frankfort.

Sweeney Attended High School in Frankfort and Graduated in 1948. He had many fond memories and lifelong good friends from High School Days in Frankfort.

After graduation he joined the US Navy and served in the West coast, Alaska, Hawaii, Marshall Islands, Guam, on the Pacific Ocean.

In 1952 He ended up in Salina, KS and went to work for Union Pacific Railroad as a Locomotive Fireman and later promoted to Engineer in 1966.

On April 1, 1953 he married Irene Ramsey Hopper, a widow with four small children (Janie, Bill, Judy and Jerry) He chose to adopt these children.  They then had a daughter, Vicki and a son, Richard. Their daughter Judy passed away in 1964, followed by daughter Janie in 1976, son Bill in 1986, and son Jerry in 2012. His wife Irene passed away 1998. In 2000 he married Marie Ramsey Sweet. Marie passed away in 2002.  

In November 2003 he was married to Norma Jean Drebes in The First Christian Church in Barnes.  They have made their home at 18 N. East Street, Barnes. Norma has spent her life in the Barnes area and Sweeney has lived his life in the Salina and Herington area until moving to Barnes in 2003.   

Beginning July 4, 1951, Sweeney had a 42 year career with 7 different railroads. He began with Maintenance-Of-Way of Missouri Pacific, ended on August 11, 1992.  On March 22, 1980, Sweeney engineered the last Rock Island train to come into Herington, KS. He had a long, distinguished career with railroads.

In his own words-Sweeney was an eternal optimist, enjoyed live country music concerts, all live theatre productions, his encyclopedias, all types of poetry, philosophies and bits of wit and humor. Enjoyed a large collection of Henry Major’s “The Gay Philosopher” items. His life-long collections were recently on display at the Lee Dam Center in Marysville, this was a longtime dream of his to display and share his collections.

Sweeney was a very kind, honest, quiet, and a truly gentle, gentleman. He always had a ready sincere smile – He displayed many of the wise traits displayed as the “Gay Philosopher”. He always seemed to have a puzzle for kids or adults to work on.  Many people in Barnes remember Sweeney as walking around the ‘perimeter’ of Barnes while he bounced his golf ball.

Funeral services will be held at 10:00 am, Thursday, January 25, 2024, at the First Christian Church in Barnes, with Pastor David Thompson officiating.   The musician will be Betty Guin. Marilyn Roger will sing “I Can Only Imagine”.  Congregational Hymns are to include “Just As I Am” and “Softly And Tenderly”. Casket Bearers are Chester Link, Josh Link, Chris Wilkins, Daniel Hiesterman, Bret Healy and Nathaniel Jones.  Burial is at Maplewood Cemetery West of Barnes.

Memorials are suggested to the First Christian Church in Barnes and may be sent in care of Christie-Anderes Funeral Home at PO Box 61, Waterville, Kansas 66548.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Francis Sweeney Megenity, please visit our flower store.

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