Butler  County,  Kansas


Claassen, Glen O., 58, farmer and stockman, died Wednesday, March 21, 2001. Visitation with family 7 to 8: 30 p.m. Friday, Bob Lamb Funeral Home; service 10 a.m. Saturday, Emmaus Mennonite Church, Whitewater.

Survivors: wife, Carol; son, Scott of Kansas City, Mo.; daughter, Michelle Claassen of Huntington Beach, Calif.; mother, Ida; brother, Ralph both of Whitewater; sister, Gwendolyn Claassen of Lawrence.
(Wichita Eagle ~ 22 March 2001)


TOM EDWARDS DAY, 59, of 2132 S. Kansas, farmer, died Sunday, Dec. 13, 1987. Service 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, Lamb Mortuary, Whitewater.
There are no immediate survivors.
(Wichita Eagle ~ 14 Dec 1987)


Kimberlin, Harvey
, 91, retired farmer, formerly of Potwin, died Monday, Jan. 11, 1993. Service 2 p.m. Thursday, Carlson Funeral Home.

Survivors: wife, Melvina; stepsons, Maynard Church, Rollan Church Jr., both of El Dorado; stepdaughters, Pauline Osborne, Beverly Lehr, both of El Dorado, Norma Schaffer of Sherman, Texas; sister, Alice Fisher of Newton; 20 stepgrandchildren; 29 stepgreat-grandchildren; one stepgreat-great-grandchild.
(Wichita Eagle ~ 13 Jan 1993)


Laham, Dr. Jerome M.
, 67, retired Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon, our brother in Christ, fell asleep in the Lord, Wednesday, July 5th, 2006, after a short, but very brave and dignified battle with pancreatic cancer. Visitations at Culbertson-Smith Mortuary, 115 S. Seneca, Saturday, July 8th from 1:00 pm - 6:00 pm and Sunday, July 9th, 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm. Monday July 10th, 6:00 pm, visitation at St. George Cathedral Chapel, followed by Trisagion Prayers of Mercy and Funeral Service at 7:00 pm. Dr. Laham was preceded in death by parents Sam and Delia Laham. He is survived by his wife Marla J. Laham, son and daughter-in-law, David and Lynn Laham, of Wichita, son and daughter-in-law, Joseph and Darcy Laham, of Potwin; Grandchildren: Tiffany Stilwell, Kaylee, Joey, Zachary, and Emily Laham and Great-grand child, Gabriel Stilwell. Brother: Dr. Robert Laham and wife Joyce; sister: Shirley Ellis and husband Tom; sister: Marilyn Kuhlman and husband Larry; all of Wichita. Leaving also, numerous loved and close family and friends. Memorial established with St. Mary Orthodox Christian Church, Missions Fund, 344 S. Martinson St., Wichita, Ks. 67213. Send condolences to smithfamilymortuaries.com. Culbertson-Smith Mortuary in charge of arrangements.
(Wichita Eagle ~ 8 July 2006)


Lorene McCaleb, 80, of Wichita, died Tuesday evening, April 12, 1994, at her home. Memorial services are 2:30 p.m. Friday at Kirby-Morris Funeral Home. Private burial services for the family will be held in Holderman Cemetery before the memorial services.

She was born Nov. 30, 1913, in Potwin, the daughter of Clarence and Lida (Edwards) Watson. She graduated from Potwin High School and attended Butler County Community College. In 1946 she and George McCaleb were married. He died in 1984. She lived in Butler and Sedgwick counties all her life and was a member of the East Heights United Methodist Church, Geologists Wives and Rotary Anns.

Survivors include: son, Jerry Peterson of Potwin; daughter, Pam Spines of Wichita; two grandchildren; four great-grandchildren.

Memorials are to the Holderman Cemetery Tree Fund. Kirby-Morris Funeral Home has the arrangements.
(El Dorado Times ~ 14 April 1994)


McCullough, Violet Ann
, 84, homemaker and retired cosmetologist, died Saturday, Aug. 5, 2000. Visitation with family 7 to 8:30 p.m. today; service 10 a.m. Tuesday, both at Bob Lamb Funeral Home, Whitewater.

Survivors: husband, John; sons, Jerry of Oakhurst, Calif., James of Denver, Jack of Aurora, Colo., Jeffrey of San Rafael, Calif.; daughters, Barbara Hendrickson of Elkhart, Donna McCullough of Herington, Carol Claassen of Potwin, Debora Claassen of Whitewater, Verla McCullough of Newton; sister, Helena Blomenkamp of Ogallala, Neb.; 18 grandchildren; three great-grandchild ren. Memorials have been established with Billy Graham Crusade and Maranatha Bible Camp.
(Wichita Eagle ~ 7 Aug 2000)


VAUGHN SEIVER, 83, of El Dorado, agricultural and business investor, died Sunday. Service 2 p.m. Wednesday, First Christian Church, El Dorado.

Survivors: wife, Gladys; sister, Grace Berglund of Aledo, Ill. Memorial has been established with First Christian Church. Carlson Funeral Home.
(Wichita Eagle ~ 26 March 1985)


End Comes To Man Familiar on Highways Here After Illness of Month

"Disciple" William, "Man of God", is dead.

He succumbed early this morning at the Lloyd Gatewood home, two miles west of El Dorado. Death was attributed to a kidney ailment.

Williams, who was 91 years old November 28, was known to thousands of persons in El Dorado, Augusta and Wichita as he had made those towns his stopping places for many years during his wanderings.

The "Apostle of the Highway" had no surname, according to his own statement.

"My name is William," he said in a recent interview. "If you can learn the names of the other apostles, I will tell you mine. They had no other names and I have none."


"Disciple" William had been a familiar figure in Butler and Sedgwick Counties for many years. Day and night, in all kinds of weather, he was seen trudging the highway between Wichita and El Dorado, Staff in hand, he stood silently, immobile, along the highway or on street corners.

Often William rode with passing motorists and it was said that apparently he was a well educated man. Always, however, he talked about religion.

The aged man never had a vocation, he stated recently. He had worked at odd jobs, however, and subsisted during his long life on the revenue from those and from the contributions of both food and money which he constantly received.

William attempted to live the life of a disciple. He was kindly, religious and delighted in helping those who had less than he.

A veil of mystery surrounds the "disciple's" life. He was born at Pittsburgh, Pa., and resided in the East for many years before coming to the Middlewest approximately 40 years ago.

He was married at one time but his wife died in 1898. Two daughters, Grace and Mabel, were born to the couple but whether they are still alive is not known. William had had no contact with them for years.

The aged man was exceedingly reticent in regard to his life and practically no details, other than his birthplace and the fact that he once was married, are known to anyone.

William became ill four weeks ago. He went to the Gatewood home the night of February 1 and was cared for by members of the family all during his fatal illness. He had stopped there on several previous occasions and had free access to the house at all times.

Funeral is Sunday

During his siege of illness, he was cheerful and expressed optimism in regard to his chance for recovery although he had no fear of death.

"My Father in Heaven will take care of me," he often said.

William will be buried as he lived----without a surname. Funeral services will be held at the Byrd Funeral Home here Sunday afternoon at 2 o'clock and interment will be made in West Cemetery. Friends from El Dorado, Augusta and Wichita are expected to pay their final respects to the man who attempted to fashion his life after that of his Master and who, for many years, was known to every man, woman and child who had occasion to travel the highway between El Dorado and Wichita.
(El Dorado Times ~ 24 Feb 1938)

Gives Explanation of Cost of Burial Disciple William

The following statement was issued today by officials of the Byrd Funeral Home:

In the agreement made between the county commissioners and the funeral directors of Butler County at their regular meeting in February, permission was granted by the commissioners in cases where families were on relief and a county burial needed, for friends or more distant relatives to add funds to the regular county burial service to obtain a more decent burial.

When "Prophet" William, "Man of God," passed away, many Wichita and El Dorado friends were anxious that he be given a respectable burial.

Gene Wilcox, supervisor of Butler County Social Service, was contacted by members of the Byrd Funeral Home to obtain authority for the regular allowance for county burial. Friends later wanted to see that a better burial be arranged and selected a service totalling $159. In case of subcription, the Byrd Funeral Home always aids in every way possible and in this case donated $30. This, with the $70 allowed by the county for services, plus $22.50 for cemetery expenses, left $59 to be raised by friends.

Thus far, the following amounts have been turned in: Mrs. Loretta W. Selover, of the Peerless Laundry at Wichita who had helped Prophet William for a long time, made a contribution herself and this, with what other friends contributed made up a total of $26.35, a list of which is on file at the funeral home. Mrs. David Nuss, also of Wichita, solicited some of her friends and William's friends and her contribution, with those of other friends, totaled $17.70. A list of donors from El Dorado is in our possession with three names---each one contributing 50 cents each to make a total of $1.50.


Expense complete


Cemetery charges




Less donation, Byrd Funeral Home




Allowed by County----- $ 70.00
Cemetery------------------- $ 22.50




Contributed by Mrs. Selover and friends




Contributed by Mrs. David Nuss and friends




El Dorado Friends




We have had a number of inquiries since a statement was made in The Times on March 9 by one of the commissioners and in order that the public might be aware of all the details we feel the necessity for this statement.

Prophet William had hundreds of friends both in Wichita and in El Dorado some of whom were unable to contribute and others of whom contributed liberally. Mrs. Selover and Mrs. Nuss, together with Lloyd Gatewood and Rev. E. W. Freeman, kindly gave of their time and money to make it possible for William to be buried decently with the aid of the county allowance.
(El Dorado Times ~ 12 March 1938)

Anton Biley Kills His Wife and Himself---Strange and Horrible Case At Benton---Must Have Been Insane

May 11 between 5 and 6 o'clock, Anton Biley shot and killed his wife and then shot himself twice and drank some carbolic acid. The tragedy occurred on the Biley farm about 3-1/2 miles southwest of Benton.

The Biley's came from Nebraska and purchased 320 acres of land about a year ago. They were Bohemians and had the hard working secretive and saying ways peculiar to them. Biley had about $1,000 in the Benton State bank. No financial or other troubles are known that would cause the evident insanity leading to the horrible tragedy.

Biley, according to the report of his children, was accustomed to scolding, abusing and even whipping her. He was possessed of a most violent temper. He had often threatened to kill her. Recently he struck his wife across the stomach with a stick and as a result she gave birth to a still born child on the day of her death. He secured a mid-wife and summoned Dr. DeOgny but was angry and threatened to kill himself. He rode his horse to Benton, secured a book of bank checks and a bottle of carbolic acid and returned home. He evidently told his wife that he intended suicide and, sick as she was, she evidently arose from her bed to remonstrate against the act. He instructed his children and made one of them write that the 160 acre farm on the north of the road was to belong to a deaf and dumb daughter aged about 19 years, then he sent his five younger children across the road ostensibly to do the chores at the barn. They had scarcely reached there when three gun shots were heard from the house. The children found the door of the house blockaded by furniture---they could not gain admission. They could see father and mother on the floor. Some of them ran to and informed neighbors, one crawled through a window and reached the telephone and summoned help.

Mrs. Biley was away from her bed off in a corner on the floor with a great gaping wound in her left breast, just above the heart, caused by a charge of shot from a shot gun at close range. Biley had shot himself first with a revolver in the center of the breast, then with a rifle, in the breast and evidently fallen backward over the foot of the bed. He had also drank some of the carbolic acid, whether before or after the shooting is unceratin.

Mrs. Biley, the mid-wife and the physician after the birth of the baby, heard Biley upstairs in a room directly over the one in which his wife was. They believed he listened to their conversation in which Mrs. Biley expressed the belief that the blow he struck her in the stomach caused her child to be still-born. The mid-wife asked if Biley couldn't be punished for it and the physician said he would see about it. After the physician was gone the tragedy followed.

Nine children are bereaved, all minors except the 19-year-old daughter who is deaf and cumb and whom the father sought to protect in his dying hour.

Coroner Hunt, W. E. Turner, the undertaker, and undersheriff Young were out all night on the case. The jury brought in a verdict practically as related here.
(El Dorado Times ~ Friday ~ 15 May 1908)

Thompson, Orman

Thompson, Orman
, 85, retired Beech Aircraft Corp. sheet metal employee, died Friday, Oct. 12, 2001. Service 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, East Point Church of Christ.

Survivors: wife, Beulah; sons, Gary of Pas Christian, Miss., Dennis of Mulvane; daughter, Sharon Russell of Andover; sisters, Margaret Harding of Pratt, Mary Patterson of Ashland, Ore.; eight grandchildren; four stepgran dchildren; nine great-grandchildren; five stepgreat-grandchildren. Memorials established with East Point Church of Christ, 747 N. 127th St. E., Wichita, 67206 and Senior Companion, 4804 Beech Drive, Augusta, 67010. Downing & Lahey Mortuary East, Wichita.
(Wichita Eagle ~ 15 Oct 2001)


Schaffer, Mary Belle (Long)
, went to be with her Lord April 3, 2006, in Tucson, AZ. She was born February 21, 1945 in MO, to Harold Everett and Lola Mae (Clevenger) Long-Edson. She married, November 30, 1962, John David Schaffer. She graduated from Andover High School in 1963. Mary served her Savior, Jesus Christ, the Risen Lord, and her life was a daily testimony to that fact. Surviving members of the family are her husband, John; two daughters, Crystal Diane (Schaffer) Sigler (married Scot Sigler) and Tresa Lynette Schaffer; four grandchildren; mother Lola Edson; and many other family members. A graveside service and burial to be at Andover, KS Cemetery on Friday, April 7 at 11:00 a.m. Memorials may be sent in remembrance to Cancer Research Center. Services by Broadway Mortuary.
(Wichita Eagle ~ 5 April 2006)


Panzer, Michael David, 35, aircraft sheet metal mechanic, died Tuesday, Aug. 12, 2003. Visitation 4 to 7 p.m. Friday; service 10 a.m. Saturday, both at Dunsford Funeral Home, Augusta.

Survivors: son, Tevin Panzer; daughter, Tanice Panzer both of Andover; parents, Dennis and Maria Panzer of Augusta; sisters, Didi Scott of Wichita, Tina Leake of Pace, FL. Memorial established with Panzer Children Education Fund.
Published in the Wichita Eagle on 8/15/2003


Jackson, Bill, 86, died Tuesday, Sept. 30, 2003. Visitation 9:30 to 11; service 11 a.m., both Friday, Oct. 3rd, Downing and Lahey Mortuary East Chapel. He was preceded in death by his parents and brother, Robert. He is survived by his wife, Elinor and two sons, William Michael Jackson, his wife, Marie, and their son, David of Manhattan, and Robert Douglas Jackson and his daughter, Karen of San Jose, CA. Bill was born June 14, 1917 at Chickasha, OK, the son of Bert and Beulah Hodge Bailey Jackson. During his adult life he was employed for many years at McCormick-Armstrong Co. In his later years, he was an Associate Professor at WSU in the Fine Arts Dept. He retired from there in 1988 as Associate Professor Emeritus. During the 1950s he became interested in private press printing and as a result became interested in book production. While at the University he taught classes in Book Design and Production. Some of his awards include Best of Show at the Kansas City Art Director's Club; Best of Show at a University and College Designers Conference and several awards at shows of Tulsa Art Directors. Mr. Jackson was a veteran of WWII, serving as Chief Carpenters Mate in the Navy SeaBees. In lieu of flowers, memorials have been established with Bill Jackson Memorial Art Scholarship Fund c/o WSU Foundation, 1845 Fairmount, Wichita, KS 67260 and Peabody Printing Museum c/o Peabody Historical Society, 204 Maple, Peabody, KS 66866.
Published in the Wichita Eagle on 10/2/2003.


Inks, Johnnie Lee "John", 67, retired roofer and boat motor repairman, passed away Jan. 3, 2005. Services 10 a.m. Saturday, Affinity Mortuary. Hobbies included working in his greenhouse, reading and a whole lot of fishing. Johnnie professed his faith in Christ on Christmas day of 2005. Preceded in death by his father, John Andrew Inks; brothers, Jim Al and Elgie Leon Inks; son, Jeffery Leon Inks. Survived by mother, Rachel Inks Starnes of Wichita; sons, Rick Henson, Neb. and Justin D. Inks, Salina; daughters, Johnna (Paul) Seib and Lois Anthony both of Kansas City, Mo., Rhonda Hutchins, Pueblo, Colo., Tonya (Onis) Few, Van Buren, Ark.; sisters, Eva Eberle, McPherson, Chris (Rocky) Byars, Gaffney, S.C., Mandy (Lou) Kalenske, Wichita, Sandy (Jim) Rails, McPherson; aunt, Mary Lefors, Wichita; numerous cousins and his beloved and devout friends and fishing companions, Floyd and Marge Fraley, Wichita; 17 grandchildren; 12 great-grandchildren. Memorial: Harry Hynes Memorial Hospice. Affinity Mortuary.
Published in the Wichita Eagle on 1/5/2006.


ROSE HILL - Huckabee, Josephine Marie, 76, homemaker, born June 22, 1928 in Kingman, KS and passed away Nov. 18, 2004. Visitation 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday; service 2 p.m. Monday, both at Dunsford Funeral Home, Augusta. Survivors include: husband of 53 years, Charles Huckabee of Rose Hill; sons and spouses, Mark and Rhonda Huckabee, Philip and Jan Huckabee all of Leon, Matt Huckabee of Andover; daughters and spouses, Zandra and Dale Houchin of Augusta, Judy and Ray Larouche of Dodge City; brother, Vernon Keeling of Kingman; sister, Annabell White of Yankton, SD; 10 grandchildren; 6 great-grandchildren. She is preceded in death by her daughter, Valerie Huckabee and grandson, Quention Paul Jones. Memorials may be made to American Diabetes Association or American Heart Association.
Published in the Wichita Eagle from 11/20/2004 - 11/21/2004.


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