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Obituary – Gene A. Kersten

Gene A. Kersten

Bossier City, LA – Maj (Ret.) Gene A. Kersten, 79 years young, entered heaven on January 27, 2018, where he is making everyone laugh with his charming wit and great story telling. Gene was an unforgettable man, making sure everyone he met had a great time. He was a man of character, integrity, loyalty, common sense, with a wicked intellect and incredible sense of humor. He led an amazing life from start to finish, full of fun (possibly too much!) and adventure along the way. He was a jack of all trades; an avid golfer, hunter, and fisherman, whom his buddies nicknamed the “Halibut King.” He could run a pool table or a chess match, and no matter what, he made sure he was home by 4:30 pm to watch Jeopardy.

He started his life adventure in the small town of Ashton, Illinois, on Aug 19th, 1938. He grew up a hard-working and mischievous farm boy, racing cars and raising cane. He attended Ashton High School and then graduated from Arizona State University. After graduation, he became a career officer in the USAF. While stationed in New York, he met and married the love of his life, Karen, whom he has been married to for 48 years. In 1972 during a tour of duty in Iran, they adopted their loving daughter Penney. After retiring from Barksdale AFB, he worked at Centenary College as the procurement manager. Once fully retired, he spent many happy years golfing, enjoying his role as an original member of the Krewe of Centaur, and volunteering for Operation Blessing, the American Cancer Society (winning an award for his dedication last year), and the Bossier Sheriff ’s Posse for over a decade. His greatest joys in life are his loving family: wife, Karen; daughter, Penney; son in law, Steve; and his smart, funny and thoughtful grandson, Steele, of whom he is so very proud.

Anyone who has known Gene, knows he is tough as nails and used up his 9 lives several years ago, from overcoming polio as a child, rolling car wrecks as a teen, a crash landing in a small plane as an adult, beating several cancers like a champ, and surviving a liver transplant. Just like he lived life—hard-working, hysterically funny and stubborn, too stubborn to quit, and funny until the end. He’s lived a life full of fun and adventure, as all of us should strive to do. Our heart and thanks go out to his doctors; and friends who traveled so far to visit him.

A Celebration of Life Service will be Thursday February 1, 2018 from 5:30pm to 8pm at Boone Funeral Home. Burial services will be Friday, Feb 2nd from 12pm to 12:30pm at the Northwest Louisiana Veteran’s Cemetery.

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