Longtime Lenexa architect Everett Hedeen died July 7, 2022, at AdventHealth Shawnee Mission following a brief illness. He was 87.
Visitation is at 10 a.m. Tuesday, July 12, followed by a memorial service at 11 a.m. at Immanuel Lutheran Church, 1700 Westport Road, Kansas City, Mo.
Everett was born Feb. 23, 1935, in Palo Alto, California, to the Rev. Dr. N. Everett Hedeen and Esther Holm Hedeen. The family moved frequently following the pastoral calls of his father, including to Alexandria, Va., Essex, Iowa, and Alexandria, Louisiana. The family moved to Kansas City when Everett was in the fourth grade, and remained in Kansas City through Everett’s graduation from Central High School in Kansas City, Mo., in 1953. He graduated from Yale University in 1957 with a degree in architecture. While there, he was the captain of the Yale track team and was a member of WolfsheadSociety. Later he attended the University of Minnesota where he earned an additional bachelor’s degree in architecture. He often said he learned the cerebral elements of architecture at Yale, andlearned to draw at Minnesota. Upon graduation, he joined an architectural firm in Northfield, Minn.
He met Arlene Suchla at Augustana Lutheran Church in St. Paul, where his uncle, the Rev. Bernard Spong, was the pastor, and they were married in 1962. The couple moved to Kansas City, Mo., in 1968, where Everett joined Howard, Needles, Tammen and Bergendoff.
Arlene and Everett were blessed with two daughters, Kristen and Marit. They lived in Overland Park for two years while searching for a lot to build a house; then designed and built the first home in the Hirning Woods subdivision in Monticello Township. The innovative design drew passersby in for a closer look.
After leaving HNTB, he worked for the Gus BoginaArchitectural Firm in Lenexa, then went into partnership with his brother, John. For the final decades of his career, he had his own firm. Among the commercial projects that he designed were a number of Residence Inns, Santa Fe Towers in Overland Park, and HUD housing. He also did residential architecture.
His design and construction skills extended to home projects, including custom designed beds for his daughters, a van that began as a shell with a single seat and ended as an RV, and a complete remodel of a 1940s bungalow in Overland Park that was his final home. He also built a seaworthy sailboat.
A stalwart member of the community, Everett served on the Lenexa Planning Commission for 25 years, and frequently served as a judge at the Great Lenexa Barbecue.
The family attended Redeemer Lutheran Church in Shawnee, then joined Immanuel Lutheran Church in Kansas City, Mo. Everett served many years on the church council, was the head usher, and was part of the team that counted the offering money. When the congregation voted to expand the building at Westport Road and Bell Street, Everett designed the expansion.
He had a dry sense of humor, sometimes teasing his children with tall tales such as being able to eat soup with chopsticks as long as they ate fast enough to get a wave going. When one daughter asked for a horse, he said she could have one if she could find one that would fit beneath her custom designed bed that had drawers to the floor. And when the family stopped to see historical markers vacations, he referred to them as hysterical markers.
Everett enjoyed hiking, boating, and the outdoors. A dedicated dad, he attended all of his daughters’ games and practices.
Following Arlene’s death in 2010, good fortune transformed a long-time friendship with Carolyn Wilson into romance. The two were together for 12 happy years.
He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife, Arlene and his sister Mary. He is survived by Carolyn Wilson; his daughters, Kristen and Marit; grandsons, Erik Hedeen and Jacob Kasper; his brother, John, of Dallas; and cousins, nieces and nephews.