Vernon Tharp High

July 19, 1948 – June 20, 2019

CARBONDALE — Vernon Tharp High, Carbondale, died Thursdy, June 20, 2019, at his home. He was 70.

He was born July 19, 1948, at Admire, the son of Charley High and Emily Tharp High. He graduated from Overbrook High School with the class of 1966. During his military service he also attained several degrees.

He entered the U.S. Air Force August 1967 and proudly served his country for the next 20 years attaining the rank of master sergeant. He served during the Vietnam War and was awarded the Meritorious Service Medal, Air Force Commendation Medal with one bronze oak leaf cluster, Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with one bronze oak leaf cluster, Air Force Good Conduct Medal with one silver oak leaf cluster, National Defense Service Medal, Air Force Oversees Service Short Tour ribbon, Air Force Oversees Long Tour Medal, Air Force Longevity Service ribbon with four bronze oak leaf clusters, NCO Professional Military Education Ribbon, Small Arms Marksmanship Ribbon, Air Force Training Ribbon, and Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal. He was later assigned to the 524th Aircraft Maintenance Unit, 27th Aircraft Generation Squadron 27th Tactical Fighter Wing at Cannon Air Force Base, N.M., where his outstanding professional skill and exemplary leadership were considered incalculable contributions to the success of the F-111D programmed flying training program.

Upon retirement from the military, he moved with his family back to Kansas living in Scranton, until this past year when they moved to Carbondale. For five years, he worked for Kansas Turnpike Authority and 10 and a half years in maintenance for Valley View Village Apartments, Carbondale.

He was a true American patriot. His pride in his country was evident every day of his life. When he was relaxing he enjoyed fishing, especially at Pomona Lake. He spent many hours working on cars. He especially loved to work on a car with his family. He was an avid Kansas City Chiefs fan. He carried a Kansas City Chiefs flag all over the world with him during his military days saying that you should look out for them this next year. He will be well remembered by his friends and family for his Red Silverado pick-up driving down the road blaring Johnny Cash music as he drove by.

He married Arlene Arnold Oct. 25, 1968, at Portales, N.M. She survives. This past October they celebrated fifty years of loving devotion to one another.

He was preceded in death by his parents; three sons, Randy High, Dennis High and Douglas High; and two sisters, Jerri Viles and Jesse Jennings.

Besides his wife, he is survived by a son, Rodney Vernon High and wife, Julia, Topeka; a granddaughter, Krystal Bowser and husband, Brian, Topeka; four grandsons, Dylan, Tyler, Travis, and Ryan High, all of Topeka; two brothers, Charles High, Prescott, Ariz., and Donnie High, Topeka; four sisters, Katie Gillum, Kate Fair, Mo., Nita Crable, Eldorado Springs, Mo., Bertha Hurt, Denver, Colo., and Earline Snook, Topeka; and four great grandchildren.

Funeral Services will be 2 p.m., Tuesday June 25 at Carbondale Church of Christian Fellowship. He will lie in-state noon to 5 p.m. Monday, June 24 at Lamb-Roberts Funeral Home, Overbrook.

Condolences may be expressed at

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