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Sunday, July 13, 2014

Profiles of three killed in Greensburg

Claude Hopkins, 79

Hopkins was found in the 300 block of South Grove, about 100 yards from the home where he had lived for the past 45 years.

His son, Jay Hopkins, said he thought his dad was headed to the car to escape the tornado when he was killed.

Jay Hopkins said his father was active in the community and was loved by everyone in Greensburg.

He liked to hike and fish and visit with family. He loved adventures. Five years ago, Hopkins rafted 60 miles on the Grand Canyon.

"He was such an easy companion, everyone wanted to take him on a trip," Jay Hopkins said. "He always had a smile."

Hopkins' first career was as a wheat farmer near Greensburg. He later was a custodian for the high school and elementary school, and he had a knack at carpentry. Most recently he volunteered his time with the senior center delivering Meals on Wheels.

He is survived by three sons, two daughters, five grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.

Funeral services are pending.

-- Amanda O'Toole

Larry Hoskins, 51

Lynn Nette Wagner waited to hear from her brother for a day before she gave up hope that he had lived through the tornado.

After all, her other brother, Charlie Jungemann, and his family got away from Greensburg unscathed.

But when neither she nor Jungemann had heard from Hoskins on Saturday, she said, she prepared for the worst.

"We can have closure now," said Wagner, who lives in South Dakota. "It's tough now, but at least we're able to bring him home."

Hoskins moved to Greensburg in the late 1970s to find farm work. Most recently he worked for Volz Oil Co. as a truck driver.

Wagner said her brother was single and carefree. He loved to hunt and fish and was known to take in stray cats.

"He was free as a breeze," she said. "He liked that life, I guess."

Funeral services are scheduled for 10:30 a.m. Saturday in Wolsey, S.D., where Hoskins grew up.

He is survived by his mother and three siblings.

-- Amanda O'Toole

Evelyn Kelly, 75

Kelly spent her whole life in Greensburg and kept to herself the past few years.

She liked "piddling" around outside and in the flowers, her son, Randy Kelly, said.

Evelyn Kelly cooked for supper clubs, restaurants, hotels and a rest home in Haviland.

About six or seven years ago, her son said, she moved into the apartment complex where she died.

Her son, who lives about 12 miles away, said his family did not expect the storm to "happen that quick."

"It's a bad deal that happened in Greensburg," Randy Kelly said.

A graveside service has been scheduled for 11 a.m. Friday at the Bucklin cemetery, located south of town.

She is survived by two sons, four grandsons and one great-grandson.

-- Amanda O'Toole

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