Beverly J. (Sullivan) Smith Ziegenbein


Beverly J. (Sullivan) Smith Ziegenbein, 91, died in her home at Eaglecrest Retirement Community in Salina, Kansas on Friday, Feb. 23, 2024. She lived in Ashland for 65 years before moving to Salina in 2019.

Mass of Christian Burial will be at 10 a.m. Monday, March 4 at St. Mary's Catholic Church, 1625 Adams Street in  Ashland. Visitation will be from 3 to 5 p.m. Sunday, March 3, with a 7 p.m. rosary, all at the church. Burial will be in the Ashland Cemetery at Ashland. The funeral will be live streamed on the Marcy Mortuary Facebook page.

Memorials may be made to Eaglecrest Retirement Community, 1501 E. Magnolia Rd., Salina, Kansas, 67401 or Gentiva Hospice, 2100 S. 9th St. G, Salina, Kansas  67401.

Arrangements are with Marcy Mortuary in Ashland.

Beverly (Sullivan) Smith Ziengenbein was born on a farm near Hartington on July 16, 1932 to Floyd and Clara (Miller) Sullivan. She graduated from Concord High School in 1950 and later that year she married her high school sweetheart, Neal Smith of Laurel. In 1953, Neal accepted a position as Parts Manager at Laune Chevrolet and they moved to Ashland, where they raised their three children. Neal passed away in 1980. In 1983, Beverly married Jim Ziegenbein and became a farmer’s wife.

Bev enjoyed working in the public for most of her life. Her first job while in high school was a candy striper at the hospital in Sioux City, Iowa. After moving to Ashland, she worked at Reece Pharmacy for many years before taking a job at City Hall as the Deputy City Clerk/Treasurer. She retired in 1989 after 14 years and later was elected to the City Council. In recognition for her many contributions to the Ashland community, she was honored to be chosen Stir-up Queen in 2002.

Bev was a “doer”, always busy in her kids’ activities. She was a scout leader, PTA officer, band parent, and ran the concession stand at the baseball field for many years. She loved music and made sure her daughters received piano and voice lessons. She served on the Saunders County Election Board, was involved in the Junior Women’s Club and the St. Mary’s Altar Society where she was in charge of many church dinners and events. Beverly was a member of the Catholic Daughters of America and also volunteered with Hospice – a role which she found very rewarding. But most of all, Bev enjoyed cooking, baking and entertaining. German chocolate and red velvet cakes, and pies of all varieties were her specialties.

She was a fun grandma – fishing, roller skating, bike riding, playing cards, riding roller coasters, and baking cookies with the grandkids. She loved it all and there’s nothing she wouldn’t try at least once.

Bev had a huge heart for serving others. Her warmth and kindness were gifts to us all.

Survivors include her children, Tim (JoAnn) Smith of Scottsdale, Arizona; Deb (Bill) Scheef of Salina, Kansas; and Valerie Sullivan of Gardena, California; stepchildren Judith Reid of Lincoln, Jennifer (Rusty) Welch of Colorado; Keith (Ardith) Ziegenbein of Ashland; and Kevin (Mary) Ziegenbein, of Ashland; grandchildren, Jen (Alan) Carlson; Katie Whelchel; Julie (Cody) Dick; and Andrew (Whitney) Scheef; step-grandchildren Brian (Shelli) Reid; Aaron (Lori) Reid; Anna Haney; Zak (Jenny) Ziegenbein; Zebadiah (Amanda) Ziegenbein; Amy Lu (Adam) Anderson; Alex (Ashley) Ziegenbein; Austin (MariBeth) Ziegenbein; sister-in-law Myrna Sullivan; 10 great-grandchildren; 21 step-great-grandchildren; three step-great-great-grandchildren and 20 nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by husbands Neal Smith and Jim Ziegenbein; parents Floyd and Clara Sullivan; brothers Norman and Gary Sullivan; daughter-in-law Bonnie Smith; son-in-law, John Sullivan; and stepson-in-law Butch Kenney.