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Matt Kirchner, son of Bobby Kirchner, speaks during his father’s memorial at Luckie Park in Twentynine Palms, Calif., July, 28. The event honored the memory of Bobby with stories, food and some of his favorite songs played over the loudspeakers.

Photo by Cpl. Ali Azimi

Memorial honors memory of Bobby Kirchner

29 Jul 2014 | Cpl. Ali Azimi

A crowd of family and friends gathered to honor the life of Bobby Kirchner during a memorial held at Luckie Park in Twentynine Palms, Calif., July 26, 2014.

Kirchner was considered to be one of the primary players on the “Super Team” in the Desert Winds Golf Course’s maintenance crew, where he served as a supervisor.

“He kept the Desert Winds Golf Course in place as a major contributing component to the quality of life aboard this installation,” said Brad Brimhall, director, Semper Fit. “Bobby had passion for what he did out there and it showed in his attitude and in his work.”

In memory of Kirchner, Brimhall asked Semper Fit employees to wear their Semper Fit black shirt polos every Tuesday for the duration of the year.

“His presence on the team mattered, made a difference, and left a positive mark,” Brimhall said.

The memorial provided family and friends outside the Semper Fit circle an occasion to celebrate the life of Kirchner in their own way. The gathering resembled a family reunion. Guests welcomed each other, their hands filled with plates of food they had brought.

They smiled, told stories and lined up to see the collage of pictures displayed in the front of the audience. Surveyors smiled as they looked at the man featured in the photos, each one a snapshot of a loving memory.

The tables were soon packed with people awaiting the beginning of the ceremony.

Kirchner’s son and daughter, Matt and Katie, stood alongside their uncle, Kenny Kirchner, as Matt stepped up to the microphone to speak about his father.

“When he would tell a story, it was never just, ‘Hey, I just got to tell you something.’” said Matt. “His whole body would get into it and would tell it with all the passion he possibly could.”

A wave of laughter spread over the crowd as the memory of the well-known story teller took life.

They continued with their stories as Kirchner’s favorite songs were played through the loud speakers. Guests ate, talked and wrote loving words in a book passed around the crowd.

As the sun touched the horizon, it marked the end of the memorial, though the memory of Bobby Kirchner lives on.


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Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center Twentynine Palms