KC police investigating Midtown bar owner’s death as homicide after April house explosion

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Kansas City police say they’re investigating the death of a popular Midtown bar owner as a homicide, months after he was killed in a house explosion.

Police identified Melvin “Lee” Mecker as the man who was killed in a house explosion at East 15th Terrace and Fremont Avenue on April 10.

Police have not identified a cause of death for Mecker, whose body was found in the rubble. There are no suspects in custody.

Melvin “Lee” Mecker

Kansas City Fire officials have not been able to determine a cause for the blaze and are actively working with the police department as well as bomb and arson investigators, according to Kansas City Fire Department Deputy Chief, Jimmy Walker.

In June, Buddies, the bar Mecker owned closed and was placed up for lease.

Melinda Hudgens first met Mecker nearly 35 years ago. She described her friend as a kind, loving man who always wanted to lend a helping hand.

“If you needed a hand out and he could do it, he would do it for you. He was a really great guy,” Hudgens said.

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