Cover photo for Kenneth G. Moats's Obituary
Kenneth G. Moats Profile Photo
1953 Kenneth 2023

Kenneth G. Moats

March 1, 1953 — July 3, 2023

St. Marys

Kenneth G. Moats, age 70, died on Monday, July 3, at his home in St. Marys from cancer.

Ken was born on March 1, 1953, in Indianapolis, Indiana, to John Samuel Moats and Evelyn Irene Sinders. Ken was the youngest of three siblings. As the only boy, he became accustomed to “making his own fun.” He developed a can-do, independent streak, a trait he carried into adulthood and his professional life. Ken grew up in Southport, Indiana, where, from an early age, Ken showed an ability to problem-solve and was deft with his hands. He decided he would forge his own path. Ken met Mary Ann Medcalf and knew immediately: “I will marry her.” They married on June 2, 1973, at St. Mark Catholic Church in Indianapolis.

Ken was a constant seeker of the truth: after much research, he discovered and converted to the Catholic Faith. Happily, Mary, through her parents, knew only the traditional Mass; in the treasures of the Faith and the Mass, Ken found all his inspiration and love, first and foremost of which was his family. 

To know Ken was to understand how important the Faith and his family were. In light of this, it was paramount to him that his children help and support one another, and they actively promoted a spirit of unity in the Faith and in the family. Sunday Mass and gatherings at home, holidays around their dining room table, business ventures, and the daily rosary were all family affairs. The couple was blessed with 12 children, eight boys and four girls.

In their early marriage, Ken and Mary lived rustically in the wooded hills of Brown County, Indiana. Ken was never afraid to try a new task. He hand-built their log cabin, hewing logs with an adze, mixing mortar, laying up stone cladding, and framing rafters. Always adventurous, he trapped wild game, kept bees, planted vegetable gardens, cut firewood, and walked the woods with his Peterson’s Field Guide. In 1973, Ken entered IBEW Local Union 481, eventually becoming a Master Electrician. In 1988, he graduated with a degree in Finance, cum laude, from Indiana University while working full-time and raising five children.

In 1991, Ken and Mary moved their family to St. Marys, Kansas, to send their children to a traditional Catholic school where they could have a stable future, with daily Mass and others of like mind. Ken started KG Moats & Sons, an industrial controls company, fulfilling a long-held dream. In 2022, the company celebrated 30 years of performing electrical work around the country and the world. Many local men, electricians or not, have worked in the company over the years.

Ken had an entrepreneurial spirit and a love of the common good. Inspired by the need for a way to make a living in St. Marys and ever relying on the help of St. Joseph, he was always encouraging others to go into business on their own, balancing two things he found essential: a certain self-sufficiency and the need for community. Ken was always ready to suggest a business venture or offer support; he loved seeing another man succeed. He further helped establish and guide a local businessmen’s association to these ends for many years. 

A creator, in 2001 he started Ocusafe Security Systems (eventually to become LiveWatch Security and now part of Brinks Home Security); in 2004, he invested in Florence Adams; in 2005, he started EmotorPro Electric Motors and what later became Sarto Countertops; in 2015 he invested in MOW Equipment Solutions. Ken was always quick to support community initiatives and cultural efforts like the Flint Hills Shakespeare Festival.

Ken was quiet, but he was never cowed. Loyalty and honesty were virtues he prized; he never simply conformed, was happy to share his opinion, but always backed legitimate authority, even when he disagreed. He was a man of great honor, deep hope, and a profound reliance on Providence—known for saying, “I’m sure it will all work out”—a trait he got from his father. He frequently sat quietly on his front porch, contemplating some plan or project in his mind. For many years, his Tuesday evening Holy Hour at 8 PM was where he brought to the tabernacle his concerns and prayers.

Ken had a great love of beauty, which he sought to pass on to his children. He appreciated the beauty of nature (for example, pointing out the constellations in the night sky and visiting botanical gardens) in art and architecture, often bringing the family to classical concerts, art museums, and churches. Seeing potential in downtown St. Marys and believing that restoration wasn’t just an idea, he bought and carefully renovated the Florence Adams and Sugar Creek buildings and helped with the Bertrand street-light project. He loved to share with others a truth he kept close to his heart: “Beauty uplifts the soul and gives people hope.”

Two months before his death, Ken had the great joy of witnessing the completion of the new Immaculata church, an endeavor near and dear to his heart. Then on June 2, Ken and Mary celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary, renewing their vows in the Immaculata with all of their children, grandchildren, and Ken and Mary’s siblings.

He died at home, fortified with everything the Church has to offer Her departing souls in the last rites: Extreme Unction, the Apostolic Blessing, and Holy Viaticum, holding a crucifix and rosary, his wife and children at his bedside. As he was fond of saying: “Blessed be God.” Thus Ken died as he lived, loving the most important things: the Faith, his family, and his friends.

He is survived by his wife of 50 years, Mary, and 12 children: Isaac and Michelle (Johnson); Nick and Julie (Summers); Ben and Adriel (Martin); Adam and Jenny (Goldade); Anna and James Vogel; John; Dan and Monica (Bobka); Greg and Therese (Carlisle); Maria and Joe Flattery; Rebecca and Mark Soisson, St. Louis, Missouri; Joe; Theresa; 56 grandchildren and his sisters Cindy and Steve Brykett, Indianapolis, Indiana; Rochelle and Ron Covert, Southport, Indiana.

Funeral arrangements are by Piper Funeral Home, St. Marys. Visitation is Friday, July 7, from 11 AM - 4 PM at his home, 309 W. Mission, St. Marys, followed by Rosary in the Immaculata at 5:20 PM. Sung Requiem Mass is in the Immaculata at 9:00 AM, followed by interment in Our Lady of Peace Cemetery, St. Marys and a catered meal in the Immaculata’s St. Joseph’s Hall. All are welcome.

In place of flowers, donations may be made to: Immaculata Church Project, PO Box 159, St. Marys, Kansas, 66536.

 

 

 

 
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Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Friday, July 7, 2023

11:00am - 4:00 pm (Central time)

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Rosary

Friday, July 7, 2023

Starts at 5:15 pm (Central time)

Immaculata Catholic Church

701 N 2nd Street, St. Marys, 66536

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Requiem Mass

Saturday, July 8, 2023

Starts at 9:00 am (Central time)

Immaculata Catholic Church

701 N 2nd Street, St. Marys, 66536

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