Eileen “Babe” Agatha Ellenbecker(90) passed away at her home in Lawrence, Kansas on July 18, 2011 from heart failure.
Eileen was born in Hanover, Kansas on September 18, 1920. She was the youngest daughter of Jerome and Catherine (Greiveldinger) Brychta and from an early age became known as “Babe” to both family and friends. Babe attended country schools near Bremen, Kansas and graduated from Hanover High School. After high school she joined her older sisters in Kansas City where she received her teaching certificate and returned to her home town to teach in a one room school house. She moved to Lawrence in September, 2000.
Babe married Leo Ellenbecker on June 5, 1946 in Hanover. They lived on the family farm west of Marysville where they raised three sons and five daughters: Joe of Lawrence (wife Sherry); Mike of Eagan, Minnesota (wife Barb), Philip of Joplin, Missouri; Sandra File of Lawrence (husband Brad); Celeste Pierce of Overland Park (husband Hal); Robyn Ice of Lawrence (husband Lee); Mary Kay Scanlon of Lenexa (husband John), and Denice Guthrie of Fredonia (husband Alan). Babe’s 18 grandchildren are Bix, Ginger and Max Ellenbecker; Ben and Jack Ellenbecker, Coleman and Adam File, Hallie, Zack and Aaron Pierce, Austin, Sydney and Allison Ice, Casey and Shea Scanlon, and Colby, Dylan and Emily Guthrie. She is also survived by her sister-in-laws Buena Ellenbecker, Dolly Ellenbecker, Ann Brychta and many nieces and nephews.
Eileen was preceded in death by her parents, infant sons, Dennis and Dwight and her siblings, Arnold Brychta, Sydonia Brychta, Laura Brychta Russell, Leon Brychta, Nell Brychta, Cecilia Brychta, Marie Brychta Benda, Eveline Brychta Duncan, Elizabeth Brychta Jueneman Hasse, Millie and Marcella Brychta Finn.
Eileen was known as a prolific gardener and was a wonderful cook and baker. Grandma’s fried chicken was a favorite among the grandchildren who always knew there would be fried chicken, fresh home baked bread and plenty of cookies whenever they visited. The birth of each grandchild was welcomed by grandma who came to spend at least a week – she delighted in giving each their first bath at home.
Eileen was an avid KU fan and loved gathering with the family to watch
the Jayhawks. She was delighted to be part of the Mass St. celebrations
as KU marched to their NCAA Championship in 2008.
Services will be held on Saturday, August 20 at 10:30 a.m. at St. Gregory’s Catholic Church, Marysville, KS., inurnment in St. Gregory’s Cemetery.
Donations in her name can be made to Visiting Nurses, 200 Maine St. Lawrence, KS 66044, or to St. Gregory’s Grade School, Marysville, KS.