In 1951, Gene and Cleo made Chanute their home. While a member of Grant Ave. Baptist Church, he drove the church bus and taught Sunday school for many years. He also taught the teenagers’ class at the Mexican Baptist Church. He most recently was a member of the First Baptist Church.
Gene sold pies at Operation Soupline for many years. He volunteered at the Red Cross with the food commodities program, the utility fund, and donated 16 gallons of blood during his lifetime.
He graduated from Independence High School in 1940 and attended Independence Community Jr. College. He enlisted in the United States Navy in 1942 and served his country for four years as an Aviation Machinist Mate First Class. He worked in the auto parts business for about 10 years. In 1960, Gene went to work for The Monarch Cement Company as a diesel mechanic; he retired in 1986.
Survivors include Cleo and their four daughters: Barbara Ann (Bruce) Seybold, Chanute, Janet Kay (Al) Hampton, Chanute, Karen Jean Webber, David Holtrop, Ireton, IA, and Colleen Ruth (Loren) Dennis, Chanute; eleven grandchildren: Sarah Lorraine (Pollan) Cunningham, husband Steve, Clay Gene Hampton, wife, Lacey, Syracuse, Amy Lorraine (Hampton) Maddy, husband Brian, Smyrna, TN, Stoney Lee Brooks, Pullman, WA, Kate Lorena Holtrop, Ireton, IA, Mathew Wayne Dennis, wife Brandi, Altamont, Jonathan Lloyd Dennis, Pittsburg, Brandon Luke Dennis, Wahoo, NE, Mark Frederick Dennis, Wichita, Martin Christopher Dennis, Wichita, and Jessica Lorraine Dennis, Chanute. There are eight great-grandchildren: Noah Wayne and Nathan Wayne Cunningham, Chanute; Tess Elizabeth, Hailey Jo, and Jalyn Kate Hampton, Syracuse; Erin Elizabeth and Benjamin James Maddy, Smyrna, TN; Mattilyn Charlene and Jocelyn Cadence Dennis, Altamont; sister, Sadie Louise Norwood, Lawrence; brother, Donald Lee Webber, wife Gloria, Newton, and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents, and brother-in-law, Robert Norwood.
A private family burial will be held in Memorial Park Cemetery. A Celebration of Life Service will be at the First Baptis t Church on Saturday, February 12 at 11:00 o’clock with Rev. Robert Pollan and Rev. Kathy Carlson officiating. Military honors will be presented by the Chanute Honor Guard. Visitation will be prior to the service at 10:00 o’clock. Penwell-Gabel Gibson Chapel is in charge of arrangements. To leave a special message for the family on-line, visit www.PenwellGabelChanute.com. Memorials may be given to Operation Soupline and Horizon Hospice and may be left at the funeral home or at the church.