John Spud Bryce Kingfisher, 3, of Vermillion, passed peacefully on May 20, 2011 in his home with his family.
A remembrance service was held Monday, May 23, 2011 at Kober Funeral Home, Vermillion at 3:30 p.m., with a visitation held from 2 to 3:30 p.m., followed by a meal at the Native American Cultural Center on the USD campus. A funeral and interment followed on Thursday, May 26, 2011 at Worley-Luginbuel Funeral Home in Jay, OK at 11 a.m., with a visitation to be held from 10 to 11 a.m. Burial will follow the service at the Eucha Indian Cemetery in Jay, OK.
Spud was born Aug. 15, 2007 in Sioux Falls. He was diagnosed with Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome, half a heart, which affected, but did not define his life. Spud endured three open heart surgeries, frequent hospitalizations and innumerable medical procedures, and although it seemed his body was constantly battered, he still managed to live a full life. In his 3 (and a half!) years, Spud did many things every boy his age does. He loved riding his green tractor and red tricycle up and down the sidewalk, chasing his cats and going to the zoo. He enjoyed the outdoors and animals, especially dogs. He also enjoyed playing with his sisters and his favorite toys were his train set and cars. Other pastime activities included watching his cartoons, Tom and Jerry being one of his favorites, and reading with his parents. Spud enjoyed music from the drum at a wacipi (powwow), to the theme song of his favorite programs, to dancing and playing instruments at the library story time.
Spud was very compassionate and loving for his age, often pointing out something his sisters Anna and Josie would like or sharing what he had with them saying here, lets share this. He was charming and charismatic, regularly working a room and constantly winning people over. He had a beguiling smile with an exuberant laugh, and despite sometimes feeling poorly, he was able to find and share joy with those around him every day of his life. In his short time with us, Spud touched countless lives. He had a strength which amazed people and which allowed him to stay with us long enough to create memories we will always cherish. To say he will be missed cannot begin to express our sadness at his loss, but we can all take comfort knowing his heart and body are whole and he is at peace.
He is survived by his parents, Billie and Megan; and sisters, Anna, 6, and Josie, 15 months, of Vermillion; grandparents, Todd and Marilyn Taylor of Forsyth, MT; Aunt Jennifer (Avolt) Baumbach; cousins, Bailey and Beau, of Bismarck, ND and Becky Taylor of Jamestown, ND; Uncle Wade Kingfisher and his family of Rapid City; Great Uncle Terry Pete (Rachel) Kingfisher and his family of Camas, WA; Great Aunt Mary (Hershel) Kaulity of Bakersfield, CA; Great Grandma Mary Lois McAtee of Greenview, IL; and many other extended family members.
Spud is preceded in death by his paternal grandparents Billie Bo Kingfisher Sr. and Lavonne Condon.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks that memorials be made to the Ronald McDonald House of Sioux Falls at 808 East 24th Street, Sioux Falls, SD 57105 or The Children's Miracle Network of Sioux Falls at 1305 West 18th Street, Sioux Falls, SD 57105.
Condolences may be posted online at www.koberfuneralhome.com.