Peter Simpson Seymour

Peter S. Seymour

Peter Simpson Seymour was born in New York City on January 4, 1933, and died in Kansas City on Feb 21, 2013, at age 80 from heart failure.  Peter’s parents John and Francis Seymour preceded him in death, as did his sister Kathy Hollingshead.

Peter grew up in New York and Connecticut, and moved to Kansas City with his mother and sister in high school.  He graduated from Central High School in 1951 and enjoyed attending the many class reunions over the years.  He graduated from Yale in 1955.  Shortly thereafter, he went to work writing for Hallmark Cards.  He performed many functions at Hallmark, working his way to editorial director of their book division where he wrote and edited children’s pop-up books.

Peter left Hallmark in the mid 70’s to pursue the life of an independent writer in Los Angeles.  He worked with a colleague at Intervisual Communications and went on to become an executive with the company, focusing on pop-up books.

Peter retired in the mid-90’s, and moved back to Kansas City where he became active in various civic organizations, including CASA, YouthFriends, the Kansas City Rescue Mission, and Operation Breakthrough.  He especially loved being a Docent at the Kansas City Zoo and was looking forward to the new penguin exhibit.

As a writer, whether glib lines on a contemporary card, rhyming prose in a children’s book, or strong images in a poem, he shared his creativity and cleverness thru the printed word.  He also enjoyed painting and filled his house with his artwork.  Peter was an avid traveler, taking trips across the U.S., as well as to Africa, and throughout Europe and the Mediterranean.  Peter’s family and friends do not mourn his death but celebrate the life he poured into his days.  We may no longer see the sparkling blue eyes and smile but he will live on as we use our creativity, imagination, and desire to seek our own adventures.

His many friends were important to him.  Peter remained close to friends he met in Kansas City and Los Angeles.

Peter leaves four children — son Steve and wife Cheryl, son Bill and wife Raelene, daughter Kathy Jenkins, daughter Paisley Leeds and husband Dave; seven grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held in the spring.  Peter would be honored by a donation to Kansas City Zoo at  or Wayside Waifs  Online condolences may be left at .

Visits: 2


  1. Janie Gibson Whalen on February 28, 2013 at 11:44 am

    So sorry for your loss. You’re in my thoughts.

  2. Larry Cavin on February 28, 2013 at 11:49 am

    I want to express my heartfelt sympathy to all of the family. I am a fellow Docent at the Zoo and have shared a number of hours working together with Peter. Being close to his age and being born and raised in Los Angeles, and having done a lot of traveling, we shared many stories as we worked together at the Zoo. I will miss his smile, the twinkle in his eyes, and his genial personality. It has been a privilege to have walked a common road with him for a brief time.

  3. Carol Thompson on February 28, 2013 at 1:58 pm

    The Kansas City Zoo and Docent Organization will miss Pete very much. He was an exceptional docent and highly valued for his storytelling and unique teaching techniques. His love of people and children was evident through his smile and animated interactions with our guests. We could always count on Pete to help with our children’s events where he easily connected with the kids and taught them about our animals. He also loved the rhinos and often spent hours in front of their exhibit educating our guests about this wonderful animal.
    Pete was beloved by all of us in the Kansas City Zoo education department and will be greatly missed by so many people. His legacy will live on in our memories through his wonderful stories.


    Carol Thompson
    Volunteer Coordinator
    Kansas City Zoo

  4. Colleen Jones on March 1, 2013 at 1:24 pm

    You will be missed here at the library. We all enjoyed you coming in with your smiles and stories.

  5. Michael and Mary Rieman on March 17, 2013 at 1:36 pm

    Was grateful to call Peter our close friend for over 30 plus years. What a wonderful well traveled, well read gentleman. Happy to have made a contribution to the KC Zoo in honor of a life well lived. We will miss our friend. Our thoughts with his family.

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