Standafer leaves a legacy of service
WORTHINGTON -- Former city councilman and staunch community supporter Lloyd Standafer, 86, died Wednesday afternoon at Sunset Cottage in Worthington. According to a family spokesman, Standafer had battled heart problems for several years and died of congestive heart failure while surrounded by his family.
Born in Montana, Standafer was not a Worthington native, but he spent most of his life focused on the needs of the local community.
"Even in the last years of his life, even when he was officially, completely 100 percent retired and not sitting on any committees or being actively involved, when we'd sit around as a family at the table, he always wanted to know what was going on with the new businesses, what's going on at the chamber, what's going on with the things that are near and dear to him," son Lon Standafer said on Thursday morning.
Standafer served as an instructor in the U.S. Air Force during World II and returned to Nobles County, where he established a large herd of registered Holsteins and was active in farming organizations. In 1954, he switched careers and became an insurance salesman with Minnesota Farm Bureau. In 1976, he started his own insurance and real estate agency. He retired in 1985.
Standafer was involved with many local organizations and efforts, but there were several that were especially near and dear to his heart. First and foremost, however, were his devotion to faith and family, according to his son. Standafer and his wife, Maree, had seven children.
"I would be remiss if I didn't say that his legacy was a love of the Lord and desire of service to mankind," Lon said. "A strong part of the legacy he left is his family's love of the Lord."
Standafer was a former member of Church of the Brethren and current member of First Baptist Church in Worthington and had been active in both congregations, serving on many committees and in capacities such as teacher, clerk, deacon and moderator.
He also served on the board of organizations such as the YMCA, Worthington Regional Hospital and District 518. His most visible role in the community, however, was perhaps as a city councilman, a role he filled for 12 years.
"Lloyd was a very conscientious councilman," said former mayor Bob Demuth. "He always read the agenda, and he was always well prepared, and he always voted what he thought was best for the people."
Standafer was also devoted to the Kiwanis organization, of which he was a member for at least 30 years, serving as president of the Noon Kiwanis group and as a lieutenant governor of Kiwanis International. Much of what he did for the club was behind the scenes.
"He was secretary of the Noon Kiwanis for a long time, and the duties of the secretary are pretty monumental," said current president Marty Rickers. "So he did a lot of work for Kiwanis that a lot of people never even saw, the things that people just take for granted. He gave a lot of his time for Noon Kiwanis."
Darlene Macklin assumed the Kiwanis secretarial duties from Standafer, but she also was well acquainted with him in her role as director of the Worthington Area Chamber of Commerce. Standafer served as chairman of the chamber's transportation committee and was also a past president of Southwest Minnesota Highway 60 Corp.
"He was a strong supporter of the chamber and the community itself and always had Worthington in his best interests," Macklin said. "I was fortunate to work with Lloyd in several different areas."
The community cause about which Standafer was the most passionate, however, had to be the Worthington Regional Health Care Foundation, an entity of which he was an architect and to which his family has chosen to designate memorial gifts.
"Lloyd basically started the foundation, I think back in 1981," said Worthington Regional Hospital CEO Mel Platt. "He was instrumental in putting it together and, in fact, served as the executive director of the foundation, a job he held until about 1990. He was very successful in building the background of the foundation, which over the years has been successful in providing programs and services at the hospital through those fund-raising efforts. It was certainly a testimony to his abilities. He was known and respected by so many people, and his ability to go out and ask for support for different programs was commendable. He developed a lot of relationships that to this day are lasting relationships with the foundation."
The memorial service for Standafer will be at 3 p.m. today at First Baptist Church. A complete obituary is on Page A2.