Nova Lee Cottrell

Nova Lee Cottrell, 86, Perry, passed away Sunday, April 5, 2020, at home. She was born November 19, 1933, at Williamstown, the daughter of Willard M. and Genevieve Robohn Viles. She attended grade school at Oak Grove, a small one-room country school in Williamstown, and later attended schools in Desoto and Leavenworth. She was a longtime resident of the Perry area.

Nova was an accomplished seamstress, wonderful cook, and enjoyed collecting antiques and refinishing furniture. She worked at Jostens in Topeka and retired as a group leader after twenty-one years of service. She loved getting her family together for holiday dinners and especially loved spending time with all of her grandchildren.

She was a member of the Perry United Methodist Church. While her children were growing up she served on church committees and helped with Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts.

Nova married the love of her life, Donald Gene Cottrell, on December 24, 1949, in Topeka. He passed away on December 1, 2019. They would have celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary this past Christmas Eve.

After retirement they took on the project of saving the historical Charles Curtis House at 11th Street and Topeka Boulevard in Topeka in 1993. Curtis was the first Native American to ever reach the high office of vice president of the United States. Now known as the Charles Curtis House Museum, it is one of the historical attractions of Topeka. Nova enjoyed giving tours and telling the history of Charles Curtis. Nova and Don became friends to all who toured the house.

The Topeka Cemetery has offered honorary grave space for the Cottrell’s near the grave of Vice President Charles Curtis where the family plans to place a memorial stone.

Mrs. Cottrell is survived by one daughter, Patricia J. “Patty” (Rob) Dannenberg, Perry; two sons, Donald E. “Gene” Cottrell, and James E. Cottrell, both Perry; six grandchildren, Holly Colbert, Lecompton, Dustin Cottrell, Perry, Wade Cottrell, Baldwin City, Wes Cottrell, Perry, Donnie Cottrell, Topeka, Jacob Cottrell, Norfolk, Virginia; thirteen great-grandchildren; one sister, Annette Rhoades, Tyler, Texas; and many cousins, nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by two sisters, Geneva Miller and Rosalie McQueen, and one grandson, infant Donald E. Cottrell.

A private family service will be held at a later date. Memorials may be made to Jefferson County Friends of Hospice or Perry United Methodist Church in care of Rumsey-Yost Funeral Home, 601 Indiana Street, Lawrence, KS 66044.

Messages & Condolences

From Julia A. Ingrassia...

James and family, I just saw this online, and was deeply saddened.. I realize it is the way it’s “supposed to be” – that we lose our parent’s before we pass, but it does not make it easier. My parent’s have lost 2 of my siblings (Steve Gregg and Brenda Hepner). I will be keeping you and your family in my prayers, forever and always.
If you need anything, I am here, for all of you.
Julia Gregg-Ingrassia

From Sheryl Pearson...

James and family so sorry to hear of Nova’s passing. Sending prayers your way.

From Stan & Debbie Spreer...

So sorry to hear this. She was a sweet lady. I recently lost both of my parents within 6 months of each other, so I know what you’re going through. I’m still struggling but I will tell you it does get easier. May your memories comfort you now and in the days to come.

From Karen O’Trimble Kooser...

Patty, so sorry your loss. May the memories of you Mother always comfort you.

From Paula Hladky & Willard Epling...

We have many fond memories of Nova and Don when they were raising their family on Pine Street in Perry. Nova was a true friend and she was someone we will always remember. Many Christmas events were held for the Jefferson County Democrats in Curtis House and the Cottrell’s were the perfect host and hostess. Nova loved to tell the story of Charles Curtis and we would spend hours having her show us items she had collected and restored. Rest in peace, Nova. You and Don deserve all the treasures of heaven for you were good and hardworking servants here on earth.

From Kathy Paslay...

So sad for the loss to this special family. You are all in my thoughts and prayers.

From Cindy Daniels...

Wade, Wes and Jacob, my sympathy to you and your family.

From Virginia Sayler...

Patty: I am so sorry to hear of your mother’s death. May your memories comfort you. Virginia Sayler

Messages are closed.