Greenlawn Funeral Homes • Cremations • Cemeteries - Northeast
3700 River Blvd.
Bakersfield, CA 93305
(661) 324-9701


1927 - 2013 Obituary Condolences
HERSCHEL KEITH KIMBLE "Cookie" 1927 - 2013 Kansan, Man of the Soil, Model Railroader, Mr. Fix-It. Beloved Father and Grandfather Visitation will be held Thursday, April 4, from 2:00 p.m. To 4:30 p.m. at Greenlawn Mortuary, 3700 River Boulevard, and recitation of the Rosary will be held Thursday, April 4, at 7:00 p.m. at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church, 124 Columbus Street, for Herschel Keith "Cookie" Kimble, 85, who passed away peacefully surrounded by his family March 25 in Bakersfield. Mass of Christian Burial will be held Friday morning, April 5, at 10:00 a.m., also at Our Lady of Perpetual Help, both officiated by family friend Monsignor Michael Braun. Herschel was born September 24, 1927 in a two story farm house in Clay Center, Kansas, to Fred and Anna Kimble. One of six children, he was named after his uncles Herschel and Keith Kresip, railmen who often brought their young nephew up onto the locomotives, which sparked a lifelong love of model railroading and model trucks. He was affectionately dubbed 'Cookie' because of his affinity for sweets, especially homemade cookies which he couldn't resist. When Cookie was 17, he and a friend traveled to Kansas City to enlist with the United States Merchant Marine Corp. He wasn't yet 18, and was afraid to lie about his age like so many of his friends had done in order to join the service. After training at Catalina and assignment at San Pedro, Herschel moved to Shandon where he finished high school and worked for his sister and brother-in-law on the Kester ranch. There he met Eleanor and Ernest Still and the Rodens, working as a young ranch hand on their properties as well. Herschel was drafted into the Army in 1951 during the Korean War and stationed at Fort Ord. Upon his honorable discharge, he returned to Shandon. He went to work for the Kern County Land Company, and later the USDA's Agricultural Research Service. He eventually joined the Soil Conservation Service and served as a soil conservationist for 34 years and head of the Kern County office before his well-deserved retirement. A trusted friend to area farmers, Herschel was a man of the soil who loved being in the fields. Herschel briefly attended Cal Poly and later received an Associate Science degree from Bakersfield College. Fancy on his feet, he met Socorro Munoz at a Catholic Social Club dance, and they were married in 1959. Their union was blessed with three daughters, Lisa, Tonia and Christina. Herschel and Socorro were actively involved in the early years of Our Lady of Perpetual Help School. In the mid 1970's, they began Young At Heart Originals with partners Jack and Lavonne Schuetz, a local stitchery business that distributed kits across the country. Among his favorite indulgences, were watching 'dusties', The Andy Griffith Show, which reminded him of his youth in small town America, pier fishing, homemade ice cream and Scotch and water. Rich memories were made over good times with family friends during summers in Cayucos and New Year's Eves on Greenhorn Mountain. His side-splitting sense of humor was as dry as a Kansas wheatfield, and having grown up with tornados and thunder cracking open the night sky, he relished a good storm. Herschel was a model railroader and hobbyist whose elaborate layouts were coveted by fellow train enthusiasts. In 1977, Socorro's diagnosis of a rare disease, Scleroderma, thrust Herschel into the role of caregiver, which he handled with grace for 17 years until her passing. During those years of experimental treatments at UCLA and in San Diego they logged many miles in the car, and Herschel became an advocate for heightening awareness of the autoimmune disease. After Socorro's passing and 35 years of marriage, Herschel's grief seemed insurmountable, but his girls put Mr. Fix-It to work on anything that needed repairs. And a succession of grandchildren proved to be a divine distraction as he babysat and shuttled little ones to and from school and other special outings. In time and at the encouragement of friends, he returned to the dance floor where he met Maryse Freitas. They shared nine wonderful years together dancing, dining and traveling together to France. A devout Catholic, he occupied the same seat in the same pew at mass for years, and remained loyal to the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. Herschel was a gentleman who valued faith and family above all else. Grandparents Days, afternoon phone calls from his granddaughters, holiday celebrations and family barbecues were all occasions that underscored his love for his children and grandchildren. Herschel was preceded in death by his wife Socorro, his parents, brother Terry, sisters Dorothy, Bess, Ruth, and Lavonne, and their spouses, and best friend and brother-in-law Don Bell and nephew Roy Kester. Those left to cherish his memory are his daughters, sons-in-law Craig Edmonston, Michael Cody and Damian Zaninovich. Grandchildren Alexander Edmonston, Victoria Cody, Alexandra Cody, Grace Zaninovich, Caroline Edmonston, Vincent Zaninovich, and Marisa Edmonston, his companion Maryse, in-laws Hope Bell, Linda Manley, Joe and MaryAnn Hernandez, Frank and Rose Munoz, Effort and Josephine Hart, and George and Sherrill Hernandez, friends, beloved La Cresta neighbors, and numerous nieces and nephews. Special thanks to Dr. Tommy Lee, Eileen Denny, Ana Martinez from Alternative Care, and Hoffman Hospice for their tender, loving care. Pallbearers are Craig Edmonston, Michael Cody, Damian Zaninovich, Alexander Edmonston, Vincent Zaninovich and Michael Murphy. Honorary Pallbearers are Skip Moss, Billy Roden, Hank Rosen, Vince Cody, Brian Pasqua, Jack Schuetz and Patrick Ryan. In lieu of flowers, suggested donations in Herschel's memory may be made to Our Lady of Perpetual Help School, 124 Columbus Street, Bakersfield, CA, 93305, or Garces Memorial High School, 2800 Loma Linda Drive, Bakersfield, CA, 93305. Cookie's was a marvelous life well-lived. In his honor, dash some salt on your watermelon this summer, sprinkle some sugar on your biscuits and gravy, raise a stiff Scotch and water or dance the night away. www.alifesstory.com Greenlawn Mortuary www.bakersfield.com/obits
Published in Bakersfield Californian from Apr. 2 to Apr. 3, 2013
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