Cover photo for Dick Sandifer's Obituary
Dick Sandifer Profile Photo

Dick Sandifer

July 23, 1935 — June 28, 2024

Shawnee

Dick Sandifer's favorite phrase when asked how he was doing was "Any better and I would be in Heaven.” Friday June 28th, he got to make that trip. He departed surrounded by his wife of 72 years, Cecilia, all his children, their spouses, and family. Having just received an Apostolic Blessing from Fr. Scott of St. Joseph Church in Shawnee, he was prepared for the trip.


Dick was born July 23, 1935 and was a true example of the American dream. Having not finished high school and humbly beginning his married life at 17 with Cee Cee as a restaurant cook, they started their family at age 19. He transitioned to a truck driver, and eventually started driving coast to coast, delivering aircraft engines for TWA. On his days off he started rebuilding cars in his backyard, which soon resulted in a used car business, requiring Cee Cee to handle the business when he was out of town. The accumulation of cars caught the attention of Roeland Park, and resulted in Dick starting a salvage yard and giving up truck driving at the urging of Cee Cee. When faced with having to move the salvage yard, the Lord was working and listening to Cee Cee’s prayers. They found an old abandoned rock quarry next to I-35 after delivering Easter baskets to families in need. It was the answer to their prayers. 

Sandifer Motors became the largest salvage yard in Kansas City, and was the beginning of a lot of hard work and many new businesses. Dick had the ability to take a vision and figure out a way to make it happen. Having a large piece of flood-prone land adjacent to his property, he had the idea to take the plot and turn it into an industrial park. He not only succeeded, but was paid to fill the park, leading him to start a construction business. After creating this new usable property, he started building industrial warehouses- the adventure that he has passed to his children. A friend of his, who was a radiologist, talked him into building trucks for MRI machines when they were first developed, so that small hospitals could have access to the technology. This required him to patent a lift that could move the machines without causing vibration. The number of businesses he started and ran successfully are too many to list, and are a testimony to his grit and determination to build his own little business empire. 

As successful as he was, his favorite titles were Dad and Grandpa. Dick was a family man. Family vacations, Colorado ski trips, and holidays were what he lived for. Cries of "do we have to have one more family photo?" still echo in the air. Family caravans of cars, trailers, and motorhomes to many memorable locations are the source of many treasured family stories. 

Inspired by the love and quiet guidance of his wife, Dick’s faith became his foundation. He and Cee Cece’s home was filled with the sounds of EWTN, be it daily mass or his beloved Chaplet of Mercy. He loved to say, “Just trust in God, he will give us what we need.” God gave him everything he needed in his wife. Cee Cee’s wisdom, strength, and trust in God’s providence throughout their marriage has truly been an inspiration to all who know and love them.

New Year’s Eve and weddings brought out Dick's dancing shoes. He loved to dance with CeeCee, daughters, daughters-in-law, nieces, and many friends- and he was good at it. His final dance was with his granddaughter Elizabeth at her wedding. Louise Regina and Rose Marie, get ready because your Dad is going to be looking for dance partners in Heaven. 

Dick’s favorite holiday was the 4th of July. Dressing up in his favorite Stars and Stripe attire, decorating the golf cart, and participating in the annual Lake Quivira parade. Finishing the evening watching the fireworks from the pontoon boat on the lake with his family. For his final journey from his home, he was dressed appropriately for the holiday. 

Dick loved to hunt and fish. It could be ducks in southern Missouri, elk in Colorado or water buffalo in South Africa, catching crappie and bass at Lake Quivira, Peacock bass on the Amazon in Brazil, swordfish in Acapulco or salmon in Lake Michigan. Some of his favorite fishing and hunting was with his grandchildren, all of whom have a Grandpa story. 

As busy as he was, he still had time to serve others. He was on the Board of Lake Quivira for 12 years, and served as President for six of those years. He accomplished many projects that still stand as his legacy at the lake. He was also President of the Auto Wreckers Association for many years. He was a proud Knight of Columbus, and ushered at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Shawnee. He and Cee Cee were an integral part of the foundation of Padre Pio Academy in Shawnee, KS. Without their support, the school would have never materialized. 

Dick was predeceased by his daughters Louise Regina and Rose Marie, his parents Harry (Miriam) Sandifer, siblings Alice (Leonard) Leap, Harry (Trudy) Sandifer, Sissy (Sam) Cohen, and Dorothy (Bill) Tousley. He is survived by his children Richard (Jerilyn) Sandifer, Mickey (Kathy) Sandifer, Joanne (Scott) Hanson, Laura (Stefan) Zauchenberger, grandchildren Bobby Elder, Jessica Sandifer, Milissa Caskey, Josh Sandifer, Scott Hanson Jr., Elizabeth Ryan, John Hanson, Michael Zauchenberger, Matthew Zauchenberger, Mary Mata, Anne Sandifer, Catherine Hanson, Patrick Sandifer, Joseph Hanson, and 18 great grandchildren. Dick is still very busy at this time. He is making arrangements for Cee Cee, his kids, grandkids, great grandkids, all his extended family and friends for their trips to Heaven, so they can participate in his next big event and photo op. 

Memorial contributions may be made to St. Joseph Catholic Church, 5901 Flint St. Shawnee, KS 66203  https://church.stjoeshawnee.org/give 

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

Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Wednesday, July 3, 2024

5:00 - 8:00 pm (Central time)

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The Amos Family Funeral Home & Crematory

10901 Johnson Dr
Shawnee, KS 66203

*Standard text messaging rates apply.

Rosary

Wednesday, July 3, 2024

5:00 - 5:15 pm (Central time)

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The Amos Family Funeral Home & Crematory

10901 Johnson Dr
Shawnee, KS 66203

*Standard text messaging rates apply.

Mass

Friday, July 5, 2024

10:00 - 11:00 am (Central time)

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St Joseph Catholic Church (Shawnee)

11311 Johnson Drive
Shawnee, KS 66203

*Standard text messaging rates apply.

Graveside Service

Friday, July 5, 2024

11:15am - 12:30 pm (Central time)

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St. Joseph Catholic Cemetery (Shawnee)

Quivira Road
Shawnee, KS 66203

*Standard text messaging rates apply.

Guestbook

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