Dean Gilliland

Feb. 3, 1933 – July 11, 2019

CLINTON, Okla. — Dean Gilliland died Thursday, July 11,2019, at Clinton Veteran Center, Clinton, Okla. He was 86.

He was born Feb. 3, 1933, at Osage City, the oldest of seven children. He graduated from Osage City High School in 1951. Following graduation, he farmed and worked on several area constructions jobs. He joined the Navy, in January 1952 and spent most of his Naval career in the submarine service, until his retirement in September 1974.

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Carleen H. Swartz Bach

Sept. 7, 1920 – Aug. 4, 2019

TOPEKA — Carleen H. Swartz Bach was lovingly supported by family and friends until she passed away Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019, at Topeka. She was 98.

She was born Sept. 7, 1920, at Dwight, on the family farm. She was a child of the Great Depression, Prohibition and Dust Bowl era. She was the daughter of John Harrison “Harry” and Birdie Lynn Crute Swartz. She graduated from Dwight Rural High School in 1938 and attended nursing school in Salina.

She married Michael Metzger in 1940. From this union two daughters were born.

Todd E. Lewis

April 12, 1966 – Aug. 4 2019

ESKRIDGE — Todd E. Lewis, Eskridge, died Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019, from injuries suffered in an accident south of Eskridge July 31. He was 53.

He was born April 12, 1966 at Topeka. He graduated from Lyndon High School in 1984, joined the Army, and fought in Desert Storm. He was honorably discharged in 1997.

He was a generous and loving man who enjoyed the outdoors and working with his hands.

He married Michelle Davis Feb. 25, 1995. They were divorced in 2016.

Russel E. Vawter

June 1, 1921 – Aug. 4, 2019

OVERBROOK — Russel E. Vawter, 98, Wakarusa, died Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019, at Brookside Retirement Community, Overbrook. He was 98.

He was born June 1, 1921, on the family farm, Wakarusa, the son of Clarence D. and Leola Bixby Vawter. He graduated from Carbondale High School in 1939.

Opal Zetmeir

Feb. 19, 1919 – Aug. 5, 2019

TOPEKA — Opal Zetmeir, Osage City, died Monday, Aug. 5, 2019, at Midland Hospice House, Topeka. She was 100.

She was born Feb. 19, 1919, near Olivet, the daughter of Homer and Bertha Criqui Allison. She grew up near Olivet, lived around the Melvern Lake area and then lived many years east of Osage City.

She worked as a riveter at Boeing in Wichita during World War II and was then a homemaker most of her life. She attended United Methodist Church.

Charles E. Sypher

March 9, 1939 – Aug. 4, 2019

TOPEKA — Charles E. Sypher, Vassar, died Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019 at Midland Hospice House, Topeka. He was 80.

He was born March 9, 1939, at Mullinsville, the son of Orville E. and Ovie E. Pedigo Sypher. At an early age, the family moved to Greensburg, where he attended elementary school and graduated from Greensburg High School in 1957.

Robert Edwin "Bob" Wells

Aug. 29, 1946 – Aug. 1, 2019

OVERBROOOK — Robert Edwin "Bob" Wells, Overbrook, died Thursday, Aug. 1, 2019, at his home. He was 72.

He was born Aug. 29, 1946, at Topeka, the son of John Edwin "Jack" Wells and Velna Louise Wymore Wells. He grew up and attended school in Overbrook. He graduated from Overbrook High School in 1964. After graduation, he went to tryout for the Pittsburgh Pirates, as a pitcher. He returned home and enrolled at Emporia State Teacher's College.

Floy McElfresh

Sept. 10, 1947 – May 26, 2019/

OGDEN, Utah — Floy McElfresh, Lyndon, died Sunday, May 26, 2019, at Ogden, Utah. She was 71.

She was born Sept. 10, 1947, at Kansas City, Mo., the daughter of Floyd and Wilma Brim three months.

She worked for Osage County Sheriff's Department for 32 years until her retirement. She was a member of Fraternal Order of Police and attended Melvern United Methodist Church.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Floyd and Wilma; two brothers, Samuel McElfresh and Daniel McElfresh; and a sister, Wanda Estabrooks.

Terry Speer

Sept. 6, 1949 – July 31, 2019

TOPEKA — Terry Speer, Melvern, died Wednesday, July 31, 2019, at Midland Hospice House, Topeka. He was 69.

He was born Sept. 6, 1949, at Dodge City, the son of Enyard and Eula Brown Speer. He grew up in Dodge City and moved to Wellsville in 1969. He moved to a farm near Melvern in 1974.

He worked in construction as a crane operator and then for Osage County Road and Bridge until his retirement.


The Osage County Herald-Chronicle

The official newspaper of Osage County; the cities of Burlingame, Carbondale, Lyndon, Melvern, Olivet, Osage City, Overbrook, Quenemo and Scranton; Burlingame USD 454, Lyndon USD 421, Marais des Cygnes Valley USD 456, Osage City USD 420 and Santa Fe Trail USD 434.

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Print edition published every Thursday.


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