Family remembers Norman Kiper as good-natured family man


by Chelsea Rabideau

Posted on January 9, 2014 at 12:23 AM

Updated Thursday, Jan 9 at 8:46 AM

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11)--  Norman Kiper’s daughter does not see him as the man who was killed at a car dealership.  She sees him as the man who supported her through college, cheered for her at soccer games and never said anything bad about anyone.

Kiper died while at work at Bill Collins Ford on Monday.  He was 50-years-old and his family is still coming-to-terms with his unexpected death.

On Wednesday, Kiper’s daughter, Kris Wright, and his cousin, Darla Novosel, told WHAS11 reporter, Chelsea Rabideau, a little about the person Norman Kiper was, how he lived his life and how important he was to their family.

“It was a life well lived,” Novosel said.  “Too short, but well lived.”

Kiper was in good health and a family man, Novosel said.

“It’s like, intellectually, you know this, but yet, you really don’t yet,” she said.

An employee at the car dealership was bringing a handicapped-equipped in for service and when he accidentally pressed the gas the car accelerated and pinned Kiper against his desk, resulting in his death.

But now, it is not the accident that killed him that his family chooses to talk about, it is the memories of how he lived his life.

“He was a family man,” Wright said.  On Sundays, she said he would choose church with his family over golf with his buddies.

Wright recently graduated from college and it is an accomplishment she is happy her father was able to share with her before he passed, but there will be many more milestones he will miss, she said.

“It’s going to be tough not having him there, walk me down the aisle, not seeing his grandkids.  It’ll be hard, but I know he’ll be there with me,” she said.

She leans on a quote from Dr. Seuss to help get through the day.  “Don’t cry because it’s over.  Smile because it happened.”

Visitation services for Kiper will be on Thursday from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the First Church of God in Frankfort.  The funeral will immediately follow.