Remembering Josh Seidel

By on December 5, 2018

From Korte Co: Josh Seidel was not one in a million.

One in a million isn’t rare enough.

He was a doer and a fixer, an engineer and an entrepreneur. He stood up in more weddings than you could count and was known as “the Swiss Army Knife” of friends. Josh in his element had an ice-cold Busch in his hand, a smile on his face and a million ideas rattling around in his head.

And when you called, he answered. He always answered.

The memory of Josh Seidel, a man way too rare for one in a million, shines as brightly as ever, five years after a work accident claimed his life.

Friendship and fixing things

As long as anyone can remember, Josh was tinkering.

His dad, Mike Seidel, remembers one evening when Josh was 11 or 12. He arrived home to find Josh in the basement with the parts of a small engine littering the room. There was something wrong with the engine and Josh was determined to fix it.

Mike was a bit worried. “I wasn’t here to watch you take it all apart,” he remembered saying, “so I’m not sure what use I’ll be helping you get it back together.”

“It’s OK, dad,” Josh said. “I know what to do.”

Another time, Josh decided to start a lawn mowing business. So he brought a beater of an old riding lawn mower back to life and then made his own pull-behind trailer to haul the rest of his equipment.

Mike said that old mower was barely able to mow their own lawn—it’s why they never used it anymore—let alone cut a dozen lawns a week. It didn’t faze Josh. Weekly mower repair jobs became the routine.

Then there was the day Josh met Eric Fritsche at Mizzou. They bonded as Josh repaired something—no one remembers what—because he was the only one who brought a toolbox to the fraternity. They were close friends ever since.

Friends were a central part of Josh’s college days. He insisted on throwing tailgate parties in the lots outside Mizzou’s Memorial Stadium. And each spring, he organized an annual trip in the Ozarks that earned the nickname “April Sunburn.”

Mike also recalls one evening when a couple of his friends were working on their motorcycles and asked Josh to help. Josh, who by this time was building his own company in the evening hours after his regular full-time job, still did not hesitate to help a couple of middle-aged baby boomers working on their favorite toys.

It was as if the boundless energy driving Josh to tinker with things also drove him to befriend everyone he met. It’s something his dad said he’ll always admire about his son.

“He never had anything against anybody. He was always pretty much on target by not judging people,” Mike said. “If he met someone, it was always, ‘I’m going to figure out a way to be their friend.’”

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