“In Memoriam” listings are expanded paid obituaries, phrased as the family requests, and may include enhanced information or photographs that might not fit within free death notices.
Major Richard Forney was a Kansas boy, born in Emporia to two Salvation Army Officers on July 27, 1946. He was “promoted to glory” on Jan 23, 2017, in Marion, Kansas, at home, surrounded by his family, following a short battle with cancer.
Richard graduated from Topeka High School and Vennard Bible College in Oskaloosa, Iowa, where he met and married Judy Seaman.
Together, they attended The Salvation Army School for Officer Training (Seminary), where they were ordained and commissioned as ministers and officers of the Salvation Army.
Richard chose a life of service, following the principle of “Heart to God and Hand to Man.”
In addition to ministering as a Corps Officer (church pastor) in 14 different appointments, he had the opportunity to be the director of The Salvation Army MOKAN Camp and Conference Center in Kansas City, and later the chaplain of the drug and alcohol treatment program for KCMO and KCK.
While serving in Buenos Aires, Argentina, from 1980 to 1985, he was the director of the Salvation Army’s youth development and programming for Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay.
Richard loved helping others through the Emergency Disaster Services Ministry. Some of those opportunities included the Mexico City earthquake, the Minot, North Dakota flood, the Fargo, North Dakota floods, the Rio de la Plata Flood in Uruguay, at Ground Zero after 9/11, the Katrina Hurricane relief, the Plainfield, Illinois tornado, and the Greenfield, Kansas tornado.
He was called upon by International HQ to run the warehouse in Albania that provided food and clothing to six refugee camps for those escaping the Kosovo war.
In 2012, Rich and Judy retired and moved into their home at the Marion County Lake in Marion, Kansas. Three days later, they were asked to take an appointment in Salina, Kansas, where they had previously served in the late 80’s.
Following that appointment, he frequently filled the pulpit for corps officers as requested. In April 2016, they accepted a temporary appointment to El Dorado, Kansas, commuting daily.
Richard was preceded in death by his mother and father, Brigadier Lew and Edith Forney. He is survived by his wife of 50 years, Major Judy Forney; his three children Michelle Forney of Salina, Dawne Curry and husband Chris of Blue Springs, Missouri, Captains Rich Forney and wife Leanna of Aurora, Illinois; brothers Hal Forney and wife Sharon of Wichita, and Majors Jerry Forney and wife Carol of Arnold, Missouri; and step-mother Brigadier Alta Forney of Marion. He is also survived by six grandchildren, and five nieces and nephews who will miss him dearly.
A “Celebration of Life” memorial service will be held at 6 p.m. Friday, Jan. 27 at The Salvation Army Wichita Citadel Corps, 1739 S. Elpyco St., Wichita KS. A dinner will follow the service.
In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be sent to The Salvation Army Wichita Citadel Corps to continue the work of serving others in need.