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Wanda Kay “Katie” Gruender

Posted on Tuesday, January 9, 2024 at 10:54 pm

Wanda Kay “Katie” Gruender, 68, of Centralia passed away Sunday, December 31, 2023, at the University of Missouri Hospital in Columbia.

Family and friends are invited to Katie’s Life Celebration 3:00 PM Saturday, January 13, 2024, at Fenton-Kendrick Funeral Home in Centralia. A visitation will be held from 2:00 PM until the time of the service at the funeral home on Saturday.

Katie was born on July 12, 1955, in Mexico, the daughter of Johnnie Fay and Eunice Marie (Stockdall) Long.

Katie was a graduate of Sturgeon High School. She owned and operated Tex Reds Barbecue until her health did not allow her.

Katie was a great cook, and a fantastic baker, she could make the most amazing pies, especially Coconut Cream Pie.

She always put others first and had a smile that could light up any room.

Her greatest joy was spending time with her “grand babies”.

Katie is survived by her fiancé Jody Dye of Centralia, her children, Richard Dale Long of Columbia, Ashley Arthur and husband Aaron of Cabool, MO, and Kayla Gruender of Millersburg; nine grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren; siblings, George Long (Kathy) of Moberly, Mary Wyatt of Sturgeon, John Long (Elaine) of Sturgeon, Dean Long (Cheryl) of Bolder Junction, WI, Martha Arends (Bart) of Sturgeon, and Chester Long (Kathy) of Sturgeon.

Katie was preceded in death by her parents, and siblings, Charles Long, Bessie Thompson, Joe Edward Long.

Memorial donations are suggested to the Centralia FFA or the Centralia Public School Foundation and may be sent in care of Fenton-Kendrick Funeral Home 104 S. Collier, Centralia, MO 65240.