Philip R. Kennedy 1937-2023

Philip R. “Skip” Kennedy, 86, of Topeka, died Feb. 22, 2023, at Stormont Vail Hospital after a brief illness. He was born Jan. 2, 1937, in Chelsea, Vt. to James and Gladys Kennedy.

He graduated from Spalding High School. He served in the Air Force from 1956-1960. He has lived in Topeka since 1964. He worked for Wentz Equipment for several years and then Berry Tractor until he retired in 2002. He volunteered at Let’s Help and later for Doorstep. He also volunteered at Great Overland Station,

For many years, he volunteered as Santa Claus at various places. He was a member of the Great Plains Balloon Club for several years.

He is survived by his wife of 63 years, Julia Burns Kennedy; brother, Ernest Kennedy of Chelsea, Vt.; his children, Randy Kennedy (Marguerite), Patrick Kennedy, James Kennedy (Sami) of Topeka and Jeffrey Kennedy (Oulay) of Lawrence; six grandchildren, Michael Kennedy, Karla Kennedy, Rachel Kennedy, Jason Kennedy, Nick Kennedy and Kristina Kennedy; four step grandchildren, Anita Hilanthom, Angela Hilanthom of Lawrence, Peter Hilanthom of Kalispell, Mt. and Michelle Barnes of Topeka; and great-grandchildren, Nathaniel and Abigail Thompson, Saphira, Alex and Amaya Kennedy, Maylania and Kaleb Langdon, Leo and Kai Hilanthom and Evelyn Barnes.

He was preceded in death by his parents; and siblings, Thelma Dickenson, Vida Martin, Beverly Lyon, Carl Kennedy and Larry Kennedy.

The family will receive friends from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2023 at Brennan-Mathena Funeral Home. Funeral services will be held at 1 p.m. Wednesday, March 1, 2023 at the funeral home. Interment will be at Shipshee Cemetery in Mayetta.

Memorial contributions can be made in his memory to Doorstep Inc. or the Rheumatoid Arthritis Foundation, sent in care of Brennan-Mathena Funeral Home, 800 SW 6th Ave., Topeka, KS 66603.

To share a fond memory or leave condolences for the family, please visit


The Holton Recorder

109 W. Fourth St.
Holton, KS 66436
Phone: 785-364-3141

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