Howard Lee Kanefield

Howard Lee Kanefield

Howard Lee Kanefield, June 16, 2019

Howard Lee Kanefield, born in St. Louis on March 20, 1931, died suddenly on Sunday, June 16th. 

Howard Kanefield is survived by his wife of 36 years, Elma (Levy); children Susan Weissman (Howard), Andy (Lois Soffer) and Jack (Amy Fried); stepsons Ricky (Diane) Lippman and Jimmy (Josephine) Lippman; and eight grandchildren.

Howard Kanefield lived two full, active lives. 

He was born in St. Louis and attended both college and law school at Washington University. He married Lois Kanefield (née Siteman) in law school and as a freshly minted attorney, they moved to San Antonio, Texas where he served his country in a U.S. Army JAG office. It was here that he had his first child. They returned to St. Louis in 1957, where Howard joined Site Oil, a company founded by his father-in-law, Phil Siteman. He spent the next twenty-five years traveling to small towns around the country, building a chain of independent gas stations.

In the 1970’s Howard left the security of his job at Site Oil and began his second career. Though trained as a lawyer, he had not worked as a practicing attorney since his time in the army. He passed the Missouri bar exam and began the practice of law.

Howard’s first marriage ended in 1979. He and Elma married in 1983 and it was this marriage that would bring Howard another family, another career, and to another city. He passed the New York bar and began working as a legal and business consultant for Van Gogh Taxi in the 1980s, a relationship he maintained for more than 20 years. He served on the board of directors for the Epilepsy Foundation of New York City and The William Alanson White Institute of Psychiatry, Psychoanalysis and Psychology, as well as continuing to provide legal and business counsel for select organizations in St. Louis. Howard and his wife also enjoyed their membership to New York’s Lotus Club. While balancing continuing careers, Howard and Elma found time to travel the world. Together, they created a unified sense of family. Their social life was full, but children and, especially grandchildren were central to it.

Howard excelled at many things, but perhaps his greatest legacy will be the love and pride he showered on his eight grandchildren. He will be missed by many; none more than Benjamin, Hannah, Nick, Parker, Perry, Sofie, Will and Zoey. 

Funeral Service Friday, June 21, 11:00 a.m. at Central Reform Congregation at 5020 Waterman. There is no visitation prior to the funeral service. Interment follows at Beth Hamedrosh Hagodol Cemetery, 9125 Ladue Road. Memorial contributions in memory of Howard are preferred to the charity of your choice. Please visit for more information. BERGER MEMORAL SERVICE