American Veteran 01

Melvin "Mel" Kary

November 23, 1947 ~ November 16, 2021 (age 73)


Eureka, SD-Funeral Service for Melvin “Mel” Kary, 73, of Eureka will be 2:00 pm, Saturday, November 20, 2021, at Eureka United Methodist Church. Rev. Shawn Abbas will officiate. The service will be live streamed and available at under Mel’s obituary.

Burial will be in Eureka City Cemetery with military honors.

There will be a prayer service Friday at 7:00 pm with visitation from 5:00-7:00 pm at the funeral home.

Mel died November 16, 2021, at Avera St. Luke’s Hospital.

Melvin “Mel” was born November 23, 1947, to Reinhold and Frieda (Junker) Kary at Eureka, SD. He graduated from Eureka High School with the class of 1966. Mel served in the United States Army in Vietnam from 1967-1969. He returned to Eureka and worked at the family’s business, Kary’s Home Oil for his entire working career until his death.

Mel was united in marriage to Bonnie Thompson on March 6, 1971, at Eureka United Methodist Church. In his younger years, he played softball for the Silver Keg Softball team. He enjoyed bowling and belonged to the Eureka Sportsman Club. Mel was always community minded. He belonged to Fred Weller American Legion Post #186 where he was the Commander in 1985-1986. He was a member of the Drill Squad where he presented the flag to the families of the deceased veterans. Mel was also a member of the American Legion 40 et 8 Club, Eureka Chamber of Commerce, Eureka VFW, Eureka Lions Club, Monday night Pinochle Card Club, Ducks Unlimited and his much-loved Eureka Fire Department.

Mel was a true servant. He was proud to have served his country and continued serving his community throughout his life.

Grateful for having shared Mel’s life are his wife of 50 years, Bonnie; daughter, Morrow (Travis) Rudebusch of Watertown, SD; brother, Roland “Rollie” Kary of Eureka; sisters, Elda Christman of Eureka and Joyce (Jerome) Pfeiffer of Aberdeen, SD; sisters-in-law, Della Kary of Eureka and Della Kary of Aberdeen; brother-in-law and sister-in-law, Perry and Kathy Thompson of Eureka and many Kary Klan nieces, nephews, great and great-great nieces and nephews who he loved dearly. Mel was preceded in death by his beloved daughter, Melissa (1-1-1972-4-30-1976), parents, brothers and sister-in-law, Alton (Selma), LeRoy and Don and brother-in-law, Marvin Christman. Also, his in-laws, Harry and Dolly Thompson whom he loved dearly.

Honorary Casketbearers will be lifelong friends, Don and Susan Fischer, Rick and Diane Weisbeck, Larry and Linda Spitzer, Gerry and Patty Haupt, Jerry and Bev Fischer, and Rod and Shirley Joachim.

Casketbearers will be Mel’s son-in-law, Travis Rudebusch, and Mel’s nephews, Vaughn Kary, Kyle Kary, Drake Kary, Randy Kary and David Kary.

Carlsen Funeral Home of Eureka has been entrusted with arrangements.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Melvin "Mel" Kary, please visit our floral store.


November 19, 2021

5:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Carlsen Funeral Home
702 8th Street
Eureka, SD 57437

Prayer Service
November 19, 2021

7:00 PM
Carlsen Funeral Home
702 8th Street
Eureka, SD 57437

Funeral Service
November 20, 2021

2:00 PM
Eureka United Methodist Church (Eureka)

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