June 1, 1921 – April 2, 2021
Constance “Connie” Grover, 99, passed away peacefully on April 2, 2021, at McCrite Plaza Senior Living, after a short bout with pneumonia. She was two months shy of celebrating a century of life.
Connie was born in Kansas City, Missouri, to Christine Johnson Renee. Connie looked forward to spending summers and occasional winters in southern Minnesota on the farm of her loving Danish grandparents, Jacob (Jensen) Johnson and Stina Jorgensen Johnson. Her hard-working single mother made sure Connie had opportunities to explore the world of music and dance. Connie developed a love of stage arts and embarked on a career as a model, dancer and vocalist, creating memories she would recount for a lifetime. Her children and grandchildren fondly remember a home filled with singing, dancing and laughter.
Connie met her future husband, Lee B.Grover, in a high school speech class. Marriage would have to wait as they answered the patriotic WWII call to join the military. Connie became a Marine (because she loved the color of the forest green uniform), and Lee joined the Navy. In 1946, after the war was over, Lee Grover and Connie Johnson, high school sweethearts, were married. Lee attended the University of Kansas School of Engineering, and Connie began working for the Veterans of Foreign Wars Administration.
Lee and Connie moved from Kansas City to St. Joseph, Missouri, in 1967, eventually establishing Lee Grover Commercial Construction Company.
At age 63, Connie returned to school to complete a Bachelor of Science degree in Therapeutic Leisure Management and graduated at the age of 67 from Missouri Western State University. She worked for the next decade as an activities therapist for developmentally disabled adults.
Connie was a lifelong Christian and always an active member of a faith community including Holy Cross Lutheran Church, Kansas City; St. Paul Lutheran Church, St. Joseph; and Kansas City First Church of the Nazarene.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Lee B. Grover, and son-in-law, Harry Cossyphas.
Connie is survived by three daughters, Sherry Cossyphas, Athens,Greece, Karen Grover (Larry J. Pierce), Kansas City, MO, and Annette Nutt (Jim), Weston, MO; grandchildren, Christos, Leonidas, Persephone, Paris, Heather, Lindsay, Tyler, Andrea, and Shannon; 15 great grandchildren plus one on the way; and one great-great grandchild. As an only child, Connie was thrilled to keep count of her growing family.
Connie will be laid to rest alongside her husband in the Elmira Cemetery. Family and friends will celebrate Connie’s vibrant life at a later date when all can travel and gather safely. Donations in Connie’s name may be made to Noyes Home for Children, 801 North Noyes Blvd. St. Joseph, MO 64506, www.noyeshome.org/donate.
A stylish dresser with a sparkling personality, Connie was partial to bright red lipstick. Those who know her may take comfort in learning that on her final day in her 99th year she was wearing bright red lipstick under her oxygen mask.
Arrangements are in care of Bross and Spidle Funeral Home, Lawson, MO.
Our Sincere Condolences
Heaven has gained a beautiful, loving, and spirited soul! Connie will be missed by family and friends, as she continues her positive life in heaven.
Thinking of you and wishing you moments of peace as you remember your mom. Take comfort knowing she had a wonderful life made all the better by her daughters, grandchildren and great grandchild. She will be missed but has left behind so many good memories.