Kansas Cattle Industry Loses Two Pioneers

April 7, 2021

The cattle industry recently lost two pioneers with the passing of Harold Koehn of Lawrence and Don Smith from Tribune. Both were leaders within the industry, including serving KLA and NCBA in various capacities.             

Koehn passed away March 30 at the age of 91. He farmed and ranched in Pawnee and Stafford counties for many years. With partners, he started Pawnee Beef Builders Inc. in 1969, which he managed until its sale in 1991 to National Farms Inc., where he then served as vice president. Koehn joined KLA in 1971 and would have been recognized at this year’s KLA Convention for 50 years of membership. He served as KLA president in 1984 and was chairman of the KLA Cattle Feeders Council from 1979 to 1980. He also served in numerous leadership positions within NCBA. No services have been scheduled at this time.             

Smith, 86, passed away April 4. He owned and operated Smith Ranch Co./Smith Cattle Inc., a ranching, feedlot and farming business, from 1958 until his retirement in 2003. He was a 62-year member of KLA, joining in 1959. Smith served as KLA president in 1983 and chairman of the KLA Cattle Feeders Council from 1980 to 1981. He also was NCBA president in 1991.             

Funeral services for Smith will be held at the Tribune United Methodist Church April 10 at 10:00 a.m. MT. Visitation will be at Price & Sons Funeral Home in Tribune from 11:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. MT April 8 and 10:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. MT April 9.