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Obituaries

Luther Bolton, Jr.
April 12, 1944 – June 11, 2021

Luther Van Doozer Bolton, Jr., 77, Harrisonville, formerly of Bloomfield, died June 11 at Cass Regional Medical Center in Harrisonville. Luther was born April 12, 1944, in Kansas City, Kansas, the son of Luther Van Doozer, Sr., and Lona Irene (Isaac) Bolton.

He grew up in Nevada. He was a United States Army veteran. Luther married Mary Foote Jan. 28, 1972. He was an over-the-road truck driver for 27 years before retiring in April 2013 from Pullem Bros.

Luther was an adventurer. He enjoyed fishing, camping and getting away.

Luther was preceded in death by his parents and six siblings, Annie, Peggy,Jessie, Marvin, Richard and Bob.

He is survived by his wife, Mary Bolton, of the home; a brother, Bill Bolton, and a sister, Nina Bolton, both of Butler; and many nieces and nephews.

Memorial services will be at 11 a.m. June 28 at the Church of the Nazarene in Harrisonville. Inurnment will be in the Missouri Veterans Cemetery in Higginsville at a later date.

Arrangements were under the direction of the Atkinson Funeral Home, Harrisonville.

William H. Cole, Jr.
Nov. 5, 1954 – June 8, 2021

William “Bill” Homer Cole Jr., Belton, was born Nov. 5, 1954, in Kansas City, the son of William Homer and Martha Ellen (Nichols) Cole. He died June 8 at the Belton Regional Hospital at the age of 66 years, 7 months and 3 days.

On July 26, 1980, Bill married Judith Ann Gile in Belton.

In his younger days, he attended Belton School until he graduated in 1973. In the summer months, he helped his dad and grandfather on the family farm and developed his love and dreams to own a farm.

He worked after school at Buerge’s Purina Feed Company and later in 1978 was employed as a heavy equipment operator for Kaw Valley Companies in Kansas City, Kansas, until his death.

Bill loved to hunt, fish and work and was known as a workaholic. He enjoyed spending time with his grandson and was the best dad and grandpa. Bill was a simple, but generous man and was willing to help anyone out.

He was preceded in death by his father; his brother, David Cole; and his sister, Lois Adams.

Bill is survived by his son, Billy Cole; a grandson, William Scott Cole; his companion, Judith A. Cole; his mother, Martha Cole all of Belton; two sisters, Linda Cole, Belton, and RayeAnn Bonar and her husband, David, Creighton; other relatives and many friends.

Funeral services were June 17 at the Dickey Funeral Home in Harrisonville.

Graveside services were June 18 at the Byler Cemetery near Creighton.

Arrangements were under the direction of the Dickey Funeral Home, Harrisonville.

Crystal R. Guhr
Nov. 16, 1978 – June 7, 2021

Crystal Reneé Guhr was born Nov. 16, 1978, in Kansas City and died June 7 at her home in Garden City. She was the daughter of Maelynn (Huff) McGarvey and David Earl Guhr.

Crystal spent her younger years in Garden City where she attended Sherwood School and excelled in track and was a cheerleader. Her senior year, the family moved to Stilwell, Kansas, where she graduated from Blue Valley High School in 1997.

Crystal joined the United States Marine Corp May 27, 1998, and proudly served her country until May 26, 2002. During her exemplary military career, Crystal was the first woman inducted into the Marine Corp Boxing Hall of Fame.

March 14, 2014, Crystal was gifted with her baby boy, Shiloh, and from that moment on, committed her life to raising him. She became a full-time mommy and homemaker. Everything she did was for Shiloh. Her world revolved around him.

Crystal did enjoy running, dancing and cooking, but the activities she enjoyed the most were the ones she and Shiloh participated in together, such as playing basketball.

In April 2020, Crystal and Shiloh moved back to Garden City to make their home.

Crystal was preceded in death by her beloved stepfather, Michael McGarvey.

She is survived by her son, Shiloh; her mother, Maelynn McGarvey, Garden City; her father, Dave Guhr and wife Katie, Lee’s Summit; brother, David E. Guhr, Jr., Kansas City; sister, Jillian Guhr, Lee’s Summit; stepbrother, Samuel Little, Kansas City; stepgrandparents, Michael Riordan, Bates City and Karen and Darold Hendrickson, Fontana, Kansas; several aunts, uncles, cousins, other relatives and many friends.

Funeral services, with full military honors, were June 18 at the Wallace Funeral Home, Pleasant Hill. Pastor Craig Otto officiated. Military funeral honors were presented by the United States Marine Corp and VFW Post 3118 and the Honor Guard of Pleasant Hill at the funeral home. Inurnment will be held at a later date and will be private.

Arrangements were under the direction of the Wallace Funeral Home, Pleasant Hill.

Helen R. Guthrie
Oct. 5, 1924 – June 13, 2021

Helen Reaves Guthrie, 96, Harrisonville, died June 13 at Westchester Village, Lenexa, Kansas. Helen was born Oct. 5, 1924, in Batesville, Arkansas, the daughter of Lucien and Eudola (Morris) Reaves.

She grew up in Moorefield on the family farm and attended Blue Creek school. During her high school years, she attended Sulfur Rock High School where she played on the basketball team.

She excelled in academics and earned a Life Scholarship to attend Chillicothe Business College in Chillicothe. While attending business college, she met Stanley Ray Guthrie. They were married Oct. 14, 1944.

While her husband was overseas, Helen worked for the Rider Motor Company as the bookkeeper and stenographer in Batesville, Arkansas. When the war ended, she and Stan made their home in Batesville where their two children, Gregory Elias and Glenda Beth, were born.

In 1960, Helen and Stan moved the family to Memphis, Tennessee, where Stan worked as an air traffic controller.

Helen maintained the home as a full-time wife, mother and homemaker.

Helen loved animals and had a passion for music. She learned to play the piano at an early age. She was the church pianist for many years and participated in WMU mission activities.

She was a good cook, decorator, always exhibited grace and good etiquette and loved to do her patriotic duty by working in the election polls of her community.

In 2003, Helen and Stan moved to Harrisonville where they enjoyed community dances in Garden City, Adrian and Harrisonville.

Helen was preceded in death by her parents; her siblings; and her husband.

She is survived by a son, Greg Guthrie and Renee, Lenexa, Kansas; a daughter, Glenda Beth Guthrie, Harrisonville; three grandchildren, Lauren Lamoreux and Dustin, Jonathan Guthrie and Tara, and Nathan Guthrie, Washington, D.C.; and three great-grandchildren, Emery and Barrett Lamoreux and Grace Guthrie.

A private family service was held followed by interment at Crescent Hill Cemetery, Adrian. Family and friends are encouraged to sign the guest book and leave their thoughts and condolences to the family on the Atkinson Funeral Home website.

The family suggests memorial contributions to Cass Regional Medical Center, ATT: Memorial Gardens, 2800 RockHa ven Rd., Harrisonville, MO 64701 or Ascend Hospice, 4550 W. 109th St., Overland Park, KS 66207.

Arrangements were under the direction of the Atkinson Funeral Home, Harrisonville.

James A. Matthes
Jan. 26, 1965 – June 14, 2021

James Allen Matthes, 56, Pleasant Hill, was born, Jan. 26, 1965, in Harrisonville, the son of Walter Allen and Sharon Ray (Burton) Matthes. He died June 14 at the Lee’s Summit Medical Center.

Jim was a 1983 Pleasant Hill High School graduate.

After high school, he attended Penn Valley Community College where he graduated from the police academy.

March 11, 1993, he married Una Theresa Conroy in Independence.

Jim had previously been employed as a police officer for the cities of Lee’s Summit and Greenwood. He was currently the C-store Manager for the Hy-Vee Filling Station in Raytown where he developed countless lifelong friendships.

He enjoyed dog racing at Derby Lane in St. Petersburg, Florida, cooking, a long walk on Madeira Beach and attending Chiefs games with his sons. He most cherished time spent with his children and grandchildren, especially time with Adonis and Lily.

Jim was preceded in death by his paternal grandfather, Walter Matthes; maternal grandparents, Perry and Leona Riddle; and a nephew, Travis Kanies.

He survived by his wife, Theresa Matthes, of the home; two sons, Alex and Angela Matthes Pleasant Hill and Jacob Matthes, Lee’s Summit; daughter, Pam and Nathan Vanmeter, Pleasant Hill; four grandchildren, Lillian Matthes, Adonis Matthes, Jax Vanmeter, and Lucas Vanmeter; his maternal grandmother, Adabel Matthes, Harrisonville; parents, Allen and Sharon Matthes, Lee’s Summit; sister, Renea and Raj Matthes Mitra, Lee’s Summit; uncle, Bill Matthes, Lee’s Summit; Sheila Loughead, Pleasant Hill: niece, Teri Kanies, Lee’s Summit; other relatives and friends.

Funeral services were June 18 at the Stanley-Dickey Funeral Home, Pleasant Hill. The Rev. Mark Conway officiated.

Interment was in the Pleasant Hill Cemetery.

Arrangements were under the direction of the Stanley-Dickey Funeral Home, Pleasant Hill.

Diana J. Merriweather
March 22, 1947 – June 6, 2021

Diana Jean Merriweather, 74, Peculiar, died June 6 at Meadowview Health and Rehab of Harrisonville. Diana was born March 22, 1947, in Kansas City, the daughter of William and May (Johnson) Ruble, II.

She graduated from Belton High School and received her RN Degree from Avila College.

Diana married Thomas Booth Merriweather Jan. 6, 1965. She had lived in the Kansas City area most of her life. She hadli ved in Belton before moving to Peculiar.

Diana worked at a hospital as a registered nurse. She was a member of St. Sabina Catholic Church, Belton.

Diana was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Thomas Booth Merriweather, in September 1977; a brother, Robert Ruble; and a son, Michael Merriweather.

She is survived by two sons, Thomas Merriweather and Jeff Merriweather, both of Peculiar; a brother, William “Billy” Ruble, III, Belton; two sisters, Linda Davis, Belton, and Patricia Liberman, Peculiar; and two grandchildren, Kaycee Merriweather and Shawna Merriweather.

A celebration of life will be at 2 p.m. June 26 at 13500 E. 198th St., Peculiar.

Inurnment will be July 17 in Cord Cemetery in Cord, Arkansas.

Arrangements were under the direction of the Atkinson Funeral Home, Harrisonville.

JoAnn Cooke
Sept. 29, 1951 – June 3, 2021

JoAnn (Van Gorkom) Cooke was born Sept. 29, 1951, in Kansas City and died June 3 at St. Mary’s Medical Center, Blue Springs at the age of 69 years, 8 months and 5 days.

She was the daughter of Woodrow Wilson and Velma Lee (Greer) Van Gorkom.

JoAnn spent most of her younger years in Pleasant Hill, graduating from Pleasant Hill High School in 1969.

After her marriage, JoAnn moved to Belton and became a full-time homemaker. After her children were older, JoAnn went to work for the Mid America Cerebral Palsy Foundation and obtained her Certified Nursing Assistant Certification.

She worked in several group homes for the Mid America Cerebral Palsy Foundation. Later, she did private in-home nursing before declining health forced her retirement. In 2019, Jo Ann moved back to Pleasant Hill and became a resident of Pleasant Hill Health and Rehabilitation Center.

When her health permitted, JoAnn liked to go thrift store shopping and bargain hunting and she always enjoyed a good cup of coffee. JoAnn enjoyed singing, both at home and at Rose of Sharon PCG of Kansas City where she was a member.

JoAnn’s life centered around her family. She loved her sons, but truth be told, after her grandson, Grayson, was born, he became her favorite. She especially enjoyed family get-togethers and holiday celebrations.

JoAnn was preceded in death by her infant daughter, Melinda LeAnn Gaug; and her parents, Woodrow and Velma Van Gorkom.

She is survived by two sons, James Bradley Gaug, Garden City, and, Sterling Robert Lee Cooke and wife, Kristina Marie Lopez, Belton; a brother, John Van Gorkom and wife, Kathy, Pleasant Hill; five sisters, Mary Sue McHenry, Belton, Linda Lee Christopherson and husband Jim, Lathrop, Velma Lee “Petie” Johnson, Raymore, Nancy Jane Ferrel and husband Jerry, Lee’s Summit, and Joyce Marie Yager and husband Mark, Pleasant Hill; two grandchildren, Grayson Rowe Lee Cooke and Elena Rome Leigh Cooke; four nephews; seven nieces; many great nieces and great nephews, other relatives and many friends.

Cremation has been accorded. The family will receive friends from 11 a.m. to noon June 26 at the Wallace Funeral Home, Pleasant Hill. A memorial service will immediately follow at noon with Pastor Dalin Antwiler officiating. Inurnment will be in the Pleasant Hill Cemetery at a later date.

Arrangements were under the direction of the Wallace Funeral Home, Pleasant Hill.

Kenneth W. Baxter
July 14, 1948 – June 11, 2021

Kenneth Wayne Baxter, 72, Butler, died June 11 at his home in Butler. He was born July 14, 1948, in Butler the son of Clarence Edgar and Myrtle Mae Dorrel Baxter.

He was preceded in death by his parents; a son, Christopher A. Baxter; and a brother, Gary Baxter.

Kenneth is survived by two sons, Russell Eugene Baxter, Arizona, and Kenneth Lee Baxter, Lee’s Summit; a sister, Joyce Fitzpatrick and husband Ralph, Butler; and grandchildren

Graveside services with United States Army military honors were June 17 at Oak Hill Cemetery, Butler.

Arrangements were under the direction of the Schowengerdt Funeral Chapel, Butler.

Patsy A. West
April 16, 1946 – June 8, 2021

Patsy West, 75, Butler, died June 8 at her home in Butler surrounded by family. Patsy Ann West was born April 16, 1946, in Amoret, the daughter of James and Thelma White Bond.

She grew up in the Amoret area and graduated from Miami High School in 1964.

She married her high school sweetheart, Lonnie West, at the age of 18.

During their 57 years of marriage, they had four daughters, six grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.

Patsy enjoyed doing anything outdoors from gardening to planting flowers and even mowing. She was a fantastic cook, ruining anyone else’s attempt at the same dish. In the words of her grandchildren, “That’s not how Grandma makes it.”

She was always up for a game of Rummy, Yahtzee or a good puzzle. Patsy loved to embroider and could sew anything you asked her to, like clothes, aprons, pillowcases, curtains, doll clothes and even costumes.

She would do anything and everything for her girls and grandchildren at the drop of a hat.

Patsy was an active member of the Jehovah’s Witness organization. She was known for her sweet nature and was loved by many. She will be deeply missed.

Patsy was preceded in death by her parents; grandmother, Hazel White; and an infant son, Allen.

She is survived by her husband of 57 years, Lonnie West; four daughters, Jennifer Denayer and son Brayden, Lonna Hansen and son Gavin, Chrystal Rincker and daughter Charlotte, all of Butler, daughter Sheri Broege and husband Steve and their three children, Jessica, Steve, Jr., and Jenna; six great-grandchildren, all of Paducah, Kentucky; her brother, David Bond and wife Shirley; sister, Ellen; and numerous cousins, nieces and nephews.

Cremation. Memorial services were June 19 at the Mullinax Funeral Home, Butler. Memorial contributions may be made to JW Worldwide Work.

Arrangements were under the direction of the Mullinax Funeral Home, Butler.

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