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Franklyn "Pat" Sumners
Franklyn Sumners
- June 4, 2018

Franklyn "Pat" Sumners, age 73, Pierre, South Dakota, formerly of White River

Franklyn "Pat" Sumners, age 73, of Pierre formerly of White River, South Dakota, died on Wednesday, February 14, 2018 at the Avera St. Mary's Hospital in Pierre.

Franklyn Wayne Sumners, better known as "Pat" to his family and friends, was born February 11, 1945, to Willis "Bill" and Winifred (Edmonds) Sumners in Murdo, South Dakota. Pat attended the Paleck School through the 8th grade. He helped at the family farm and in 1961 they moved to White River. Pat lived with his brother Jim in Raymond, Washington and worked at the Willow Point Oyster Factory.

He was united in marriage to Sharon Schmidt on July 14, 1964, in Murdo. They had 2 children: Terry and Tonya.

A man of many talents, always willing to lend a hand to help someone in need, Pat showcased his skills in many arenas. He spent five years working for Dave Gustafson Construction helping to build South Dakota Interstates 90 & 29. After that in 1968, Pat and Sharon purchased a home in White River, South Dakota

Initially he worked at the Farmers Co-op and as a scraper operator for AG&E Construction. He also planted thousands of trees for the Mellette County Soil Conservation office, forming longstanding tree plots that have aided local farmers and ranchers for decades. He was extremely proud of his meticulously planted tree plots.

Pat started his first personal business in 1974 when he purchased a water well drilling machine from Mike Dryer. Over the years he has drilled hundreds of wells throughout south central South Dakota and had an uncanny knack of finding water. Pat spent a good amount of time utilizing his wisdom and "magic" witching sticks to find the best spot to drill which saved the customer money and provided the best water source on the property.

A real "jack of all trades" he embarked in other successful business ventures including a service to steam out frozen water lines, a boot repair business, and a wrecker service.

He was never scared to try something new and backed down from very few challenges. His ability to think outside the box and develop common sense solutions helped him to always come out on top.

Pat also served his community as a city and county Law Enforcement professional for over eight years. He successfully completed Law Enforcement Training Academy in Pierre, South Dakota as well. Amazingly he accomplished all of this with basically an 8th grade education, although he later completed his GED in 1979.

A stranger to no one, Pat always took time to meet and get to know anyone usually over coffee with the gang, and once he was your friend he was a friend for life. Pat cherished his family and was a caring and loving husband, father, and grandfather to his six grandkids.

Blessed to have shared Pat's life with loving memories is his wife Sharon of 53 years; their two children Terry (Margaret) Sumners from Fort Worth, Texas, and Tonya (Rock) Kierstead from Pierre; along with six grandchildren: Ty, Kaylee, Brooke, Tayia, Shelby, and Matthew; two sisters Marjorie Desport Covina, California, and Goldie Reichardt, Hot Springs; two brothers Jim Sumners and Mary of White River, and Dan Sumners and his wife Oletta of Deer Park, Washington; and a host of other relatives and friends.

Pat was preceded in death by his parents Willis and Winifred Sumners; three brothers Ike, Jack and Johnny Sumners; six sisters Shirley Kuper, Myrt Larson, Billie Nordlie, Evelyn Dutroit, Nadine Tucker, and Ida Lorraine Sumners in infancy; and his father-in-law Andrew Schmidt.

A memorial service will be held at 1:00 p.m. CST on Monday, June 11, 2018, at the White River Community Events Center in White River.

Arrangements are with the Rush Funeral Home of Philip.



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