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UMB chairman emeritus passes away at 86

R. Crosby Kemper, Jr., chairman emeritus of UMB Financial Corp., died on January 2, 2014. He was 86. Kemper, who was based in Kansas City, Missouri, worked at UMB for more than five decades, beginning his career there as a night transit clerk. In 2001, Kemper was named senior chairman; he retired four years later. UMB is a diversified financial holding company.


KANSAS CITY, Mo.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–R. Crosby Kemper, Jr., long-time Kansas City businessman, philanthropist and civic leader, died at the age of 86 on Jan. 2. Kemper was chairman emeritus of UMB Financial Corporation and had been serving in various roles across the company since 1950.
Born in Kansas City, Mo., R. Crosby Kemper, Jr., only son of R. Crosby Sr. and Enid Jackson Kemper, was born Feb. 22, 1927. Kemper’s banking career spanned more than five decades from his start at age 22 at his father’s City National Bank as a night transit clerk—where he met trains and sorted checks—to senior chairman of the multi-bank holding company now known as UMB in 2001.
He retired from UMB in 2004, leaving the banking legacy to the next generation. At that time, his son J. Mariner Kemper became the sixth Kemper to lead the company.
Kemper had seven children between his marriages to Cynthia Warrick Kemper and Mary “Bebe” Stripp Kemper and is survived by: R. Crosby Kemper III, Pamela Kemper Gabrovsky, Sheila Kemper Dietrich, Alexander C. “Sandy” Kemper, Heather Kemper Miller, J. Mariner Kemper and Mary Kemper Wolf. By his children, Kemper was often quoted for the importance of “doing what’s right, not what’s popular,” and served as a role model for civic activity. He is also survived by 22 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
In lieu of flowers and in honor of Kemper’s lifelong commitment to Kansas City, contributions may be made to the Agriculture Future of America, American Royal, Phillips Academy, Kansas City Symphony and the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art.
Please visit the website that has been created in R. Crosby Kemper Jr.’s honor for a full biography, photos, videos and legacy information:
About UMB:
UMB Financial Corporation (Nasdaq: UMBF) is a diversified financial holding company headquartered in Kansas City, Mo., offering complete banking services, payment solutions, asset servicing, private wealth management and institutional investment management to customers. UMB operates banking and wealth management centers throughout Missouri, Illinois, Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma, Nebraska and Arizona. It also has a loan production office in Texas. Subsidiaries of the holding company include companies that offer services to mutual funds and alternative-investment entities and registered investment advisors that offer equity and fixed income strategies to institutions and individual investors. For more information, visit, or follow us on Twitter at @UMBBank, Facebook at and LinkedIn at