Category Archives: Obituaries

Patrick Cathers, 51, Wellington: Nov. 25, 1962 – Sept. 16, 2014

Patrick D. Cathers, of Wellington, died following a brief illness on Tuesday, September 16, 2014 in Wichita at the age of 51.

Patrick was born the son of William and Linda (Stangle) Cathers on Sunday, November 25, 1962 in Wichita.

Pat worked at and received services from Futures Unlimited for over 20 years. During this time, he made many friends in the workshop, at his home and with the staff. Pat was the quiet type that preferred standing back and people watching. He will be missed by all those that knew him.

Tammy Sue Putter, 55, Wellington: Oct. 12, 1958 – Sept. 16, 2014

Tammy Sue Putter

Tammy Sue Putter

Tammy Sue Putter, of Wellington, died Tuesday, September 16, 2014 at her home at the age of 55.

Tammy was born the daughter of Sue Jean (Patton) and Vernie Simmons on Sunday, October 12, 1958 in Wellington.

After attending elementary and high school in Wellington, she worked at the Mid-West plant doing sheet metal work. She was later employed at Kennedy Elementary school where she has spent the past 19 years until recently resigning in August of 2014.

On August 25, 1983, Tammy and Larry D. Putter were united in marriage in Gunnison, Colorado. Together they celebrated 31 years of marriage.

Eleanor Davidson, formerly of Wellington, died Wednesday

Eleanor Davidson, wife of Jerry Davidson of Lumberton, Texas died Wednesday after a long fight with cancer.

Her services will be on Sunday, Sept. 14,2014 at the Baptist Church in Waynoka, Okla. at 2 p.m.


Helen Maxine Stewart, 90, Caldwell: March 18, 1924 – Sept. 9, 2014

Maxine Stewart

Maxine Stewart

Helen Maxine Stewart was born March 18, 1924 in Caldwell to John Alva and Nettie White. She  died on Sept. 9 at the Golden Living Center in Wellington.

Stewart attended country schools and graduated from Deer Creek High School, Deer Creek, Okla. She attended college in Alva, Okla. and became an emergency war time country school teacher.

On Dec. 24, 1944, she was united in marriage with Carl Stewart in Caldwell. To this union two daughters were born, Nancy Lea and Joyce Ann.

Chris Brown, 49, Wellington: Dec. 3, 1964 – Sept. 7, 2014

Chris Brown

Chris Brown

Christopher S. Brown, of Wellington, died unexpectedly Sunday, September 7, 2014 at Sumner Regional Medical Center in Wellington at the age of 49.

Chris was born the son of William Moss and Barbara Fern (Land) Brown on Thursday, December 03, 1964 in Wellington. He was a graduate of the Wellington High School Class of 1983. Chris was employed in the aircraft industry for many years having worked both a Oxwell and Cessna Aircraft as a foreman.

On May 23, 1986, Christopher and Annie Pearce were united in marriage in Wellington. Together they celebrated 28 years of marriage.

Tanya Jo Higgins, 58, Wellington: August 30, 1956 – Aug. 31, 2014

Tanya Higgins

Tanya Higgins

Tanya Jo Higgins, of Wellington, died Sunday, August 31, 2014 at the University of Kansas Medical Center in Kansas City at the age of 58.

Tanya was born the daughter of Marian (Good) and Vernon “Tiny” Helton on Thursday, August 30, 1956 in Medicine Lodge.

On January 11, 1974, Tanya and James R. Higgins were united in marriage at the First Assembly of God in Wellington. Together they celebrated 40 years of marriage. Tanya was a people person in every sense of the word. She had a big heart and was always willing to talk and listen. Whether it was at a restaurant, a granddaughter’s game or while working as a receptionist at Dr. Stalcup’s office, she made friends everywhere she went. Tanya was at her best around others and loved going anywhere with family and friends

Oma Aline Miller, 76, Wellington: Aug. 1, 1938 – Sept. 4, 2014

Oma Miller

Oma Miller

Oma Aline Miller, 76, of Wellington died, Thursday, September 4, 2014 at the Sumner Regional Medical Center in Wellington, Kansas.

Funeral Services will be held at 10:30 a.m., Tuesday, September 9th at the First Free Will Baptist Church in Wellington. Visitation will be Monday at the  Shelley Family Funeral Home from 4 p.m. until 8 p.m., with the family receiving friends from 5 until 7 p.m.

Burial will be at the Sumner Memorial Gardens Cemetery in Wellington. A memorial has been established with Sumner County Council on Aging and may be left with the Shelley Family Funeral Home of Wellington. For further information please visit

Adrian Lee Hayden, 89, Wellington: May 2, 1925 – Tuesday, Sept. 2, 2014

Adrian Lee Hayden, 89, of Wellington, died Tuesday, September 2, 2014 at Sumner Regional Medical Center.

Funeral Services will be at 2:30 p.m., Monday, September 8, 2014 at the Shelley Family Funeral home in Wellington. Visitation will be Sunday from 1 p.m. until 5 p.m. at the Shelley Family Funeral Home. No family night is scheduled.  A memorial has been established with the First Freewill Baptist Church and may be left with the Shelley Family Funeral Home of Wellington. For further information please visit

Adrian Lee Hayden was born on May 2, 1925 the son of William and Hattie Hayden in Moline, KS.

Edna Ruth (Bond) Spencer, Argonia, 85: May 24, 1929 – August 31, 2014

EDNA RUTH (BOND) SPENCER, of Argonia, died Sunday evening, August 31, 2014 at Via Christi–St. Francis in Wichita, KS at the age of 85.

She was born the daughter of Harry and Jessie (Benton) Bond in Attica, KS on May 24th, 1929.  At an early age, the family moved to a country home south of Argonia.  She attended Garden Prairie School until the end of the 5th grade, when the family moved to Argonia.  She graduated from Argonia High School with the class of 1947.  After graduation she moved to Wichita where she worked for the Wichita Eagle for several years and later for Boeing Aircraft Company.

She was baptized in the Immanuel Baptist Church in Wichita and it was while attending there she met and married her husband Francis Ray Spencer on October 14, 1951.  They lived 57 years together and to this union one daughter and four sons were born.

Jimmy Alley Reed, 911 Director of Emergency Services in Sumner County, dies Saturday

Jimmy Allen Reed

Jimmy Allen Reed

James “Jimmy” Allen, 57, Reed died Saturday, August 30, 2014. He was the 911 Director of Emergency Services for Sumner County.

Allen held several positions including KEMA representative to the State Interoperability Executive Committee; KS 911 Coordinating Council board member Governor Appointed for the Operations-Subcommittee; past President (board member) for Kansas Chapter of APCO; South Central Homeland Security communications sub-committee; South Central Region Vice-President to KEMA board; Sumner County Incident Dispatch Team; and Hutchinson Community College Advisory Board (dispatch program).

State certifications were held with IMT (Incident Management Team); COML (Communications Leader); COMT (Communication Technician); KCEM-KS Certified Emergency Manager and Mulvane Fire Department Volunteer.

Evelyn Diebolt, 56, Wellington: March 6, 1958 – August 28, 2014

Evelyn M. Diebolt, of Wellington, died Thursday, August 28, 2014 in her home at the age of 56.

Evelyn was born the daughter of Joe and Christina (Ronspey) Diebolt on Thursday, March 06, 1958 in Iola. Her parents precede her in death.

Following high school, Evelyn continued her education by briefly attending college. She then began at local nursing homes by providing maintenance and cleaning services. Evelyn eventually moved away from the Iola area and settled in Sumner County where she spent several years residing in Wellington. She was involved with the Sumner County Mental Health Center where she was part of the gardening group and helped as a dishwasher. Evelyn loved animals and was particularly fond of chickens and roosters as they reminded her of growing up on a farm. 

Susan Wampler, 66, Wellington: June 3, 1947 – Dec. 19, 2013; services Saturday

Susan Wampler

Susan Wampler

Susan Wampler, 66, loving wife, mother and grandmother passed away in Oregon on December 19, 2013.

Graveside Memorial Services will be held at 10 a.m., Saturday, August 30, 2014 at the Osborne Cemetery in Mayfield.  Arrangements are with the Shelley Family Funeral Home. For further information please visit

Susan Kay Wampler was born June 3, 1947 the daughter of Floyd and Leona (Nuttle) Wampler in Wellington. The family moved to Anaheim, CA and she graduated from the Anaheim High School.

Darl Parsons, 86, Geuda Springs: Nov. 15, 1927 – August 24, 2014

Dari Parsons

Dari Parsons

Darl Parsons, 86, of Geuda Springs died August 24, 2014 surrounded by his family at his home and residence for the past 49 years. He was born November 15, 1927 in Hugoton, Kansas. He was the son of Ted and Bess (Beach) Parsons.

His family moved to the Winfield, Kansas area in 1937. Graduating from Oxford High School in 1945, Darl joined the US Navy Jan. 1, 1946. He spent the majority of his service in the Pacific and was honorably discharged as Seaman 2nd Class Nov 24, 1947. Upon discharge, Darl assisted his Father in farming. Darl continued his life as a farmer until his death.

On May 2, 1953 he married Jo Ann Patton. He continued farming as well as working at the GE plant at Strother Field. He worked at the GE engine rebuilding facility for 20 years retiring in 1990. He continued his farming post-retirement of cattle, sheep and wheat. A lover of animals, he always had a dog and many cats for companionship.

Max Roger Simpson, 81, Bushnell, Fla.: Nov. 19, 1932 – Monday, Aug. 11, 2014

Max Roger Simpson, 81, of Bushnell, Fla. died Monday, August 11, 2014 at Bushnell, Fla.

He was born on Nov. 18, 1932. Mr. Simpson was a member of the Masonic Lodge and was retired from the Jimmy Dean and Sara Lee Corp. in Osceola, Iowa.

He is survived by his step-daughter, Jacqueline Hansen of St. Michael, Minn.; stepson John Bromley of Bushnell, Fla.; sons, Roger Simpson of Oregon, and Dennis Simpson of Gilbert, Ariz.,; sister Paula Tatum of Branson, Mo.; brother Corky Simpson of Phoenix, Ariz.; and three grandchildren, and one great-grandchild.

Max Earl Bretches, former Wellington athletic director, 78: Sept. 10, 1935 – Aug. 18, 2014

Max Bretches

Max Bretches

Max Earl Bretches, age 78, died Monday morning, August 18, 2014 at Kansas Medical Center in Andover, surrounded by his loving family.

Max was born on September 10, 1935 in McPherson to Stanley Bretches and Alice (Anderson) Bretches.

Max graduated from McPherson High School in 1953 and from Wichita University in 1957 where he was the football tri-captain.  His picture appeared in the 1957 Sports Illustrated issue. 

Max Bretches, an icon with WHS athletics, has died

Max Bretches

Max Bretches in the center.


By Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — It is with heavy hearts to report that Max Bretches, a longtime Wellington High School teacher, coach, athletic director, athletic supporter and friend to many in the community has died. We have no details but hope to have an obituary soon.

Bretches is shown above in the middle playing as a lineman for the Wichita University football team featured in the Sept. 24, 1956 edition of Sports Illustrated.

Claude Stanley Rice, Wellington: Feb. 3, 1931 – Aug. 17, 2014

Claude Stanley Rice

Claude Stanley Rice

Claude Stanley Rice was born on February 3, 1931 in Wellington, KS.  He died on Sunday, August 17, 2014 at the Life Care Center in Wichita, KS.

He was baptized at the First Baptist Church in Wellington.

Claude served in the United States Army from 1947 to 1950 as a Military Policeman.  He joined the Boeing Airplane Company on January 3, 1951 and retired as a General Supervisor on June 1, 1988 at the age of 57 so that he and his wife, Lucille, could spend more time together.  He beloved wife and best friend, Lucille Rice, for 43 ½ years preceded him in death on August 17, 2003.

Rodger Dwyer, 67, Wellington: Nov. 1, 1946 – Aug. 15, 2014

Rodger Dwyer

Rodger Dwyer

Rodger Frank Dwyer, age 67, lifelong Wellington resident, died early Friday morning, August 15, 2014 at the Robert J. Dole VA Medical Center in Wichita, KS.  He was a retired Manufacturing Manager and had worked at GEC for 34 years.

Rodger was born on November 1, 1946 in Wellington, KS to Carl F. Dwyer and Betty J. (Washburn) Dwyer.  He attended school in Wellington and was a 1965 graduate of Wellington High School.  Rodger also received an Associate’ s Degree from Butler County Community College in Engineering.  He served in the United States Army with 101st Airborne Division from 1967 – 1970 and was a Viet Nam Veteran.

Rodger married Brenda M. Green on June 3, 1972 at the First Christian Church in Wellington, KS.

James “Jim” Marsh, former Wellington City Engineer, 80: Aug. 7, 1935 – August 10, 2014

Jim Marsh

Jim Marsh

James “Jim” Marsh, of Haysville, died Sunday, August 10, 2014 at his home in Haysville at the age of 80.

Jim was born the son of Gordon and Ginny (Smitley) Marsh on Tuesday, August 07, 1934 in Terril, Iowa.

On June 5, 1954, Jim and Wynona “Noni” Palmer were united in marriage in Mulvane. Together they celebrated 48 years of marriage before her passing in 2002. He was blessed to find love again and married Nancy (Hoefer) on September 12, 2003 in Derby. 

Wesley Holman, 83, formerly of Oxford: July 1, 1931 -Aug. 6, 2014

Wesley Holman

Wesley Holman

Wesley R. Holman, Sr., 83, formerly of Oxford and Arkansas City died on Wednesday, August 6, 2014 at Riverview Manor of Oxford.

Funeral Services will be held at 10:30 A.M. on Tuesday, August 12, 2014 at the First Baptist Church in Oxford, Kansas with Pastor Glendon Epp presiding.  Military Committal Services will follow at Oxford Cemetery. The visitation service will be held  from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Monday evening, August 11th at Oxford Funeral Service.

Born July 1, 1931, in Oxford, Kansas, Wes was the eldest of two children born to Raymond C. Holman and Helen G. (Hoover). He grew up in the Slate Valley area of Kansas until he joined the Air Force in 1948. He was stationed in Okinawa, Japan after the Korean War. Returning to the states, Wes met Ruth Louise Holloway and they wed in 1956 in Kansas. Wes worked at the Boeing Plant in Wichita for several years, just as his father and father-in-law had.

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