Philip L. ‘Phil’ Pestinger

Philip Lee Pestinger, 87, passed away September 16, 2013 peacefully at his home. Visitation will be Thursday, September 26, 2013 from 6:00 to 8:00PM at Rumsey-Yost Funeral Home. A Memorial Service will be held at Plymouth Congregational Church, 925 Vermont St., Lawrence, KS on Friday, September 27, 2013 at 11:00AM. Rev. Dr. Peter A. Luckey will officiate the service.

Born Philip Lee Pestinger, February 16, 1926 in Crisfield, KS to Fredrick and Myrtle (O’Leary) Pestinger. He attended Anthony High School where he played in every sport (football center & basketball guard) played in the band, participated in theater and was Senior Class President. Upon graduation he was drafted into the Army where he joined the 88th Chemical Company as a radio operator, discharged April 15, 1946.

Went on to college on a GI Bill: Phil had talked with “Phog” Allen to come and try out at KU. When he couldn’t find housing and couldn’t afford a motel room, he landed a basketball scholarship at Southwestern College where he received a Bachelor’s degree in Teacher’s education 1950. He went on to teach and coach at: Sawyer KS; Vermillion KS; Piper KS and ended up in Lawrence, KS, where he taught and was a counselor until his retirement in 1987. Phil worked on the Chain Crew at KU’s home football games for 31 years and was an avid golfer.

Married Rheta Kimball in 1954. Rheta passed away from breast cancer in 2001. He remarried in 2011 to Rosie Miller.

Phil is survived by his wife Rosie, two daughters Kim (Tracy Cook) Derby, KS. Joyce Marsh (Dave Droge) Princeton, KS.; son Jay (Sara Pestinger) Overland Park, KS. Six grandchildren; two great-grandchildren and 3 step sons (all of Wichita).

Phil LOVED to dance and entertained many with his jitterbug!! Dad, we know you are dancing on God’s ballroom floor…… dance on and on!!!

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorial contributions to Plymouth Congregational Church.

Messages & Condolences

From Mr. Kim R. Wrench...

Dear Kim,Jay,and Joyce,

My thoughts are with you all during this time. I was very fond of your Dad while I was in school. Keep the faith and know he was loved much.

Mr. Kim R.Wrench

From Tom Marsh...

Joyce, Kim and Jay – Your father was a joyful and vibrant soul. His presence was felt where ever he went. We are so happy to have known him. His family was a great source of happiness and pride and each of you, and his grandchildren, are a living tribute to his legacy. Our condolences and love, Chester, Beth and Tom

From Clark Cropp...

Jay, Kim and Joyce: Our parents always enjoyed socializing with your parents when possible, and Dad so enjoyed working with your father. He valued Phil’s thoughtful counsel, and his friendship. Your Dad also was always helpful and respectful of the students he interacted with, including me. You are in our prayers.
–Clark Cropp and family

From Bill Medley...

Jay, Kim and Joyce: Phil and I were friends and colleagues for many years. His friendship was appreciated and I have many fond memories of our association. He was always proud of his family. I regret that my health prevents me from attending the memorial services, Jennifer, Forrest and Maxine join me in expressing our condolences.Bill Medley

From Ralph Stevens...

Coach Pestinger was my instructor in drafting class at Piper High school. I have many good memories about a fair and just teacher and a really good role model for us all.
I am now about to turn 65 years old and still remember the little “punch” in the arm he would give all us guys to keep your attention! What a great guy!! He will be missed by all those who knew him at good old Piper High!!

From lynn/carol sheppard...

Coach Pestinger came to Piper our Sr. yr. He was a good man,,great role model for young men and women..he will never be forgotten..He took a few Sr. athletes down to the state track meet…As we climbed into his car he announced that we were no longer his students…we were now his friends…a truly great teacher and friend always,,,I now have a spirit coach to see me through my last quarter of life.Lynn/Carol Sheppard

From Mary Amundsen...

Jay & Sara

So sorry for your loss. I know this must be a difficult time. Take comfort in all those who knew and loved your father.


From Jim Bong...

Mrs Pestinger, Jay, Kim, & Joyce, so sorry and sad to hear the passing away of Mr. Pestinger. Many thoughts and prayers go to all of you. Mr. Pestinger was a great and kind hearted individual, full of laughter, and that will be the memory I have of him since the day I first met him when he was one of the counselors at LHS. My goodness, that was 40 years ago. God Bless.

From Stan Burchfiel...

Dear Mrs. Pestinger…”Toad” was an excellent athlete. The obituary failed to mention that he was an excellent tennis player, as well as football, and basketball. He was always up-beat, and a joy to be around. I talked to him a week prior to his death, and he seemed at peace. Sincere love and sympathy to your entire family. Stan Burchfiel, Anthony H.S. (43)

From Kent Thompson...

Dear Mrs. Pestinger,
Your Phil was an accross-the-street neighbor in Anthony. Phil and Dick were fine athletes. Bill would have been were it not for a genetic illness (muscular dystrophy?). I wasn’t athletic either. I loved that family. They all were good to me. Fred was the most handsome and manliest man I ever knew. Along side of Fred, the Marlboro man would have looked effete. Fred would carry Bill into the Anthony Theater for movies. Bill was behind Fred’s shoulders with his arms around Fred’s neck.Fred had his arms under Bill’s femurs. Fred was as straight as a ramrod,and looked ten feet tall. There was a respectful silence. Myrtle and her sisters were to-be-stared-at beauties.
Stan Burchfiel(AHS l943) told me Phil was dying. Phil and I had one telephone conversation and then he was gone. I didn’t tell him I loved him. I hope he knew. I pray Jesus will come to you and each of Phil’s progeny with consolation and comfort.
Kent Thompson (AHS 1945)

From Abby Dillow...

I have so many wonderful memories of my grandpa! Many of delicious Saturday morning pancake breakfasts in our “jammers” around the table at the house on Joseph drive, and dancing with him at my wedding last December. My heart breaks at the loss of such a wonderful man, but I am also overwhelmed with happiness that I had the honor of having and knowing such him. Miss you so much already Grandpa Phil. I can’t wait to see you again someday!

From Mary Snyder...

Rosie, Jay, Kim, and Joyce, You are in my prayers as you travel this path of celebrating Phil’s life. I will always remember Phil’s “big” laugh and love of life. No one could keep him off the dance floor! I am forever grateful that I was blessed to know him.

From Anne (Fisher) Kahle...

Coach Pestinger was my driver’s ed teacher 40xxxx years ago. If you were scheduled to be the first driver of the day, you were shaking in your boots because you knew the first stop was for a cup of coffee and he knew how to fill a cup to the top — no room for 1 more sip! And you knew that if you slopped coffee on him when you took off (up a hill, of course) you didn’t pass for the day. I still have the smoothest acceleration skills in the family….

My thoughts and sympathy are with the family in your loss.

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