WESTON, Mo. -- They say when he wasn’t offending people, he was actually helping them. The town of Weston said goodbye to a beloved local who died last week.
“There is something about him that has come to represent Weston that will be gone.”
His name was Edward Kline, but you’d be hard pressed to find anyone in Weston who actually knew that.
“For some reason, Boogie nicknamed me Eager Beaver.”
“You could not, could not miss Boogie in town.”
The man everyone called Boogie was known for driving around town and for calling people everything but their actual name.
“I always used to smile a lot when I was little, and he would call me Happy.”
“Boogie gave me the nickname Skinny Ass when I was in high school, and he was my bus driver.”
“Once he gave you a nickname, he remembered it forever.”
Nathan Danneman is the head football coach at West Platte High School.
He said, “Boogie was a very interesting gentleman.” Danneman moved from a small town to Weston to take over the football program and said with a smile that Boogie “didn’t make it very easy.” Danneman said Boogie was always around. “He showed up at practice, make sure the kids were okay. He was just the face of Weston.”
Danneman said Boogie had a good repertoire with all the kids and believes it’s because he wanted to be a part of something where kids worked hard to achieve a goal.
“He would not miss a football game. He was actually a bus driver as well, he transported the football team to and from games and the wrestling teams.”
Larry Clemens grew up around and worked with Edward “Boogie” Kline.
Clemens said, “He was ornery growing up and I don't think he changed a bit.” He also explained Boogie had an incredibly giving heart. Clemens told FOX 4 about a time the high school principal had a child with special needs. “Boogie went and bought a van and took that young man back and forth to school every day,” Clemens said.
People say he didn’t have the most conventional style.
James Turnbull has known Boogie since the town favorite drove his school bus.
Turbull said, “Boogie gave me the nickname Skinny Ass when I was in high school and he was my bus driver. He was different. He drove fast, liked to hit the potholes, and liked to see you bounce out of the seat sometimes. I don't ever remember him stopping at railroads crossings or anything. He was something else.”
Turbull choked up during his interview. He said Boogie was like an “uncle to everybody” and “I don't think he had an enemy at all.” He said other people can work to be more like Boogie. “Get to know your neighbors. Get to know the kids in school. It's much better that way.”
“He was just always around for the kids, and he's done some very kindhearted things for people in town,” said Helen Weigman. She’s known Boogie for decades. She loved Boogie’s “kind-heartedness and his orneriness.” She said her eldest son played football at West Platte High School and she remembers back to a time Boogie helped those kids.
“Boogie would offer to buy shoes for some of the kids if they didn't have the money to get the shoes, the cleats,” she said.
Those who love him said behind the booming voice and abrasiveness was a heart the size of the Show Me State. Tanner Lawson coaches football and baseball at the high school is Weston.
Lawson said, “I think he was protective of the entire community. I heard somebody the other day said watchdog. And that's what he was. He was patrolling the streets. If he saw something he didn't like, he'd stop and address it, make sure things were fine.”
Lawson described Boogie as a mainstay who drove through his family’s neighborhood, took care of kids, and “bled blue” for West Platte. Lawson said Boogie’s “bark was bigger than his bite” and that “communities that have people like Boogie are stronger and better.”
Richard Emery called Boogie “the most colorful character in town.”
He said, “He was kind of ornery but he really had a very big heart. In all of his orneriness and his mischievousness, he studied people. He watched people. If he watched you very long, he understood you. And that's how he could give you a nickname. He fit that nickname to you and the discomfort of that is sometimes people realized it fitted them better than they wanted to know.”
He agreed Boogie had his own way of doing things.
“Boogie lived life by his own terms. He was not necessarily going to conform his behavior to some cultural standard. I think we all respect people who are able to do that in wish in some little way that we could do that ourselves. There is something about him that has come to represent Weston that will be gone. There will never be another Boogie.”
Edward A. Kline was 72 years old. He leaves behind an aunt. “Boogie” was laid to rest in Weston.