David Lee Hodges

David Lee Hodges of Lawrence, Kansas, passed away on November 20, 2020. 

David was born in Lawrence, as was his father and his father’s father. His dad Glenn now resides in Lumberton, Texas, with his wife Glenda. His mom Nancy Alstrom Hodges Wells resides in Tonganoxie, Kansas. David is survived by his siblings, whom he loved very much: Eugene Hodges, Michelle Tannehill, Shelly Pruitt, and Bill Wells. 

David grew up in Kansas City, Kansas. Later, he and his family moved to Tonganoxie, Kansas. There he attended high school, enjoying friends and playing football. It was in Tongie that he met his sweetheart and future spouse Mary Fales…all thanks to the ‘foresight’ of his science teacher Mr. Pat Wakeman, who by all accounts was the most patient teacher in the world, but who upon one occasion did find reason to move David, and about a half dozen of his somewhat boisterous friends, from the very front of the class near where he was teaching, to separate areas within the class which were as far away from him as possible. David was deposited right next to Mary. Mr. Wakeman was heard to say, “Perhaps she can teach you some manners!”…which she attempted to do throughout their subsequent three years of courting and 38 years of marriage. 

Along the way, David and his wife had two children: Sydney who married Tara, and Henry who married Wendy, a union from which sprung David’s most precious treasure, his grandson Theodore David. Theo was very much Grandpa’s best bud and often worked right alongside him on any project he could talk his Grandpa into. In fact, Theodore’s first paying job (at the age of 3 years) was cleaning air conditioning coils with his Grandpa Dave…albeit wet, it was a good start I’m sure David’s brothers and sisters of UA Local 441 would appreciate. 

David worked many years in commercial HVAC and formed many close friendships with those he worked for, those he worked with, and those he served. He especially enjoyed mentoring and working with young people coming up in the trade. It brought him great joy and pride. David’s work ethic was instilled in him at an early age in his grandfather Walt Hodges’ plumbing shop in KCK working amongst a family of  plumbers. His work history included many years in Facilities at the University of Kansas, Huxtables, and later P1. He also worked many years for his friends Alan Wright and Bill Harmon of A&H.  

David was a past member of Hell On Wheels, Rolling Thunder, and the Military Vehicle Preservation Association while restoring his 1942 Willy’s Jeep ‘Alice’, which graced the Lied Center stage during the opening celebrations for the Dole Center at KU. ‘Alice’ (named after his wife’s middle name so she wouldn’t be jealous of all the time he spent with her), and a later restoration, his 1942 Ford Script ‘Eugene the Jeep’, participated in many a parade and event and provided great experiences for David and his family. David graciously encouraged young children and their parents to jump in his jeep for pictures and to marvel at and touch all the “cool stuff” inside. He especially loved sharing his Jeep with veterans of WWII who had first hand experiences themselves during the War in just such a vehicle. David was more than happy and thrilled to share his ideas and knowledge, or to dig right in to help others on their restorations. Many very close friendships were made and cherished by David, and much fun was had especially at the annual family military vehicle ride and campout. 

Most of all, David was a kind fellow with a big heart who never knew a stranger. When he saw someone in need he would graciously give them a helping hand, whether that meant running a plate of Christmas feast to an elderly man waiting in a post office on the holiday during a snowstorm so the man didn’t have to travel all the way back home in between two part time jobs on that stormy day, buying a piece of old junk from a traveler who needed gas money to continue on to his destination, fixing a car on the highway in the rain so a mom with babe in tow could be on her way, or fixing a power wheelchair on the sidewalk for a man on his way to the neighborhood grocery store. It wasn’t something he thought about, it was just something he did. David was a wonderful loving husband, father, grandfather, son, son in law, brother, brother in law, friend and neighbor. 

His family would like all to know that they are most grateful for those who have shared their memories of David with them, and they sincerely appreciate all those who have expressed their condolences in his passing. His family finds great comfort to know so many loved David as they did. Thank you! He will be missed very, very much. 

The family won’t be having a memorial right away due to the pandemic, but will announce a memorial for David at a later time and will do their best to try to get that information out to those who may want to share that time with them. 

Condolences may be sent at rummest-yost.com.

Messages & Condolences

From Gina Hodges Buchanan...

I am sorry to see David has passed. I am his cousin Gina. Harvey K. Hodges’ daughter. As kids, we spent time together at his mother’s house in KCK. Nancy would watch me in the afternoons and we would watch Gilligan’s Island on TV. I have looked to locate family in recent years – I am sorry I didn’t locate him sooner. blueindigoskies@aol.com

From Mary Ann (Neff) Hayden...

I remember David as always being very kind as I do Mary as well from Tonganoxie High School. David was a member of our class and I’m so sorry for his loss. God bless all of you at this time.

From Sean Marconette...

I was fortunate to work with David at Huxtable, as an apprentice. David was a great role model and great teacher, and always willing to provide help and answer my questions. It was great seeing his return to P1. He was always a kind soul, and would do anything for anyone. Condolences to his friends and family.

From Dave Christenberry...

I met Dave through shared fascination of OD iron. He would always jump in feet first to help solve any problem. I never heard him utter a bad word about anyone and will always be remembered fondly by me. I will toast his memory a Belgium beer with a slice of orange. Rest well my friend.

From Troy Wolf...

I had the pleasure of riding dirt bikes in Arkansas with Dave. What I remember most was his big smile!

From Larry Weber...

Mary my condolences to you and family on Dave’s passing. I am so sorry and saddened to hear of his passing. Dave was always so positive, fun and thinking of others. I met Dave motorcycle riding and was privileged to be on several rides with him. I will miss him
Larry

From Frank Molby...

I got to know David when he was overhauling our chillers at Hallmark. He was an amazing mechanic and he very particular about his work. He always had time to explain to me the chiller problems, and share his Jeep projects. David will be long remembered and fondly missed by all who knew and loved him. Prayers and condolences to Mary and his family.

From Mindy Turner...

Thoughts and Prayers to Mary, Henry and Family. David is surely going to be missed by all. I don’t think there is anything he couldn’t fix. I’m pretty sure he had every wiring diagram and schematic symbols memorized as possible. If one of the guys had a problem they knew they could call David for help, he was a great guy and helped everyone.

From Derek & Brenda Welsh...

Sorry to hear about Dave’s passing. We always enjoyed talking to him. My grandfather (Homer Welsh) enjoyed talking Army jeeps with him. Our thoughts and prayers are with Mary and the rest of the family.

From Loretta Seidl...

David was a wonderful friend and gentleman.
He helped me over the past years with many projects in my home. I can’t say enough about his kind ways and gentle heart. He always spoke of his loving family and especially ❤ Theodore. My condolences to all of you.

From Mary Hodges...

Hi this is Mary, David’s wife. I want to share with you all a bit of David’s history, which you may or may not know. He was born in Lawrence, as was his father and his father’s father. His father Glenn now resides in Lumberton, Texas with his wife Glenda. His mother Nancy Alstrom Hodges Wells resides in Tonganoxie, Kansas. David is survived by his siblings, whom he loved very much, Eugene Hodges, Michelle Tannehill, Shelly Pruitt, and Bill Wells. David grew up in Kansas City, Kansas. Later, he and his family moved to Tonganoxie, Kansas. There he attended high school, enjoying friends and playing football. It was in Tongie that he met his sweetheart and future spouse me (Mary Fales, at the time)..all thanks to the ‘foresight’ of our science teacher Mr. Pat Wakeman, who by all accounts was the most patient teacher in the world, but who upon one occasion did find reason to move David, and about a half dozen of his somewhat boisterous friends, from the very front of the class near where he was teaching, to separate areas within the class which were as far away from him as possible. David was deposited right next to me…and Mr. Wakeman was heard to say, “Perhaps she can teach you some manners!”…which I attempted to do throughout our subsequent three years of courting and 38 years of marriage. Along the way, David with and I had two children whom we love so very much: Sydney who married Tara; and, Henry who married Wendy, a union from which sprung David’s most precious treasure, his grandson Theodore David. Theo was very much Grandpa’s best bud and often worked right alongside him on any project he could talk his Grandpa into. In fact, Theodore’s first paying job (at the age of 3 years) was cleaning air conditioning coils with his Grandpa Dave…albeit wet, it was a good start I’m sure David’s brothers and sisters of UA Local 441 would appreciate. David worked many years in commercial HVAC and formed many close friendships with those he worked for, those he worked with, and those he served. He especially enjoyed mentoring and working with the young people coming up in the trade. It brought him great joy and pride. David’s work ethic was instilled in him at an early age in his grandfather Walt Hodges’ plumbing shop in KCK working amongst a family of plumbers. His work history included many years in Facilities at the University of Kansas, Huxtables, and later P1. He also worked many years for his friends Alan Wright and Bill Harmon of A&H.  David was a past member of Hell On Wheels, Rolling Thunder, and the Military Vehicle Preservation Association while restoring his 1942 Willy’s Jeep ‘Alice’, which graced the Lied Center stage during the opening celebrations for the Dole Center at KU. ‘Alice’ (David gave her my middle name so I wouldn’t be jealous of all the time he spent with her), and a later restoration, his 1942 Ford Script ‘Eugene the Jeep’, participated in many a parade and event and provided great experiences for David and our family. David loved giving permission for young children and their parents to jump in his jeep for pictures or just to marvel and touch all the “cool stuff” inside. He especially loved sharing his Jeep with veterans of WWII who had first hand experiences themselves during the War in just such a vehicle. David was more than happy and thrilled to share his ideas and knowledge, or to jump right in to help others on their restorations. Many very close friendships were made and cherished by David, and much fun was had especially at the annual family military vehicle ride and campout. Most of all David was a kind fellow with a big heart who never knew a stranger. When he saw someone in need he would graciously give them a helping hand, whether that meant running a plate of Christmas feast to an elderly man waiting in a post office on the holiday during a snowstorm so he didn’t have to travel all the way back home in between two part time jobs on that stormy day, buying a piece of old junk from a traveler who needed gas money to continue on to his destination, fixing a car on the highway in the rain so a mom with babe in arms could be on her way, fixing a power wheelchair on the sidewalk for a man on his way to the neighborhood grocery store, or simply helping a friend or neighbor. David was a wonderful loving husband, father, grandfather, son, son in law, brother, brother in law, friend and neighbor. We, his family, want all to know that we are most grateful for those who have shared their memories of David with us, and we sincerely appreciate all those who have expressed their condolences in his passing. It is most comforting to know so many loved David as we did. Thank you! He will be missed very, very much. We won’t be having a memorial right away due to the pandemic, we will announce a memorial for David at a later date and do our best to try to get that information out to those who would want or be able to take part. But know we are thinking of all of you and love that you loved our David.

From Chris...

David was a great man he will be missed. Was always nice to see David pull up in his Jeep with that big Hodges smile.
Many thought and prayers to Mary

From Kelli Preston...

Mary, I am so very sorry for your loss. I am keeping all of you in my prayers. I pray you find comfort in the love and memories you shared.

From Steve Lee...

Thoughts and Prayers to Mary and the Family and Friends. I’ve know him for several years. We use to talk and help each other with our Jeeps. He was a Great friend to all who knew him.

From Kevin and Dana Wingert...

We are so sorry to hear of David’s passing, he was such a wonderful man. Prayers for your family.

From Matt and Julia Bellemere...

David helped us with our boiler and became a friend. We will never forget the time and conversations we shared. Truly, he touched our lives with his sincerity and openness. Our hearts are broken.

From LaDonna Laing...

So sorry for your loss, Mary Ann

From John Darnell...

David was a long time friend and good mentor i work with him at ku and p1 for 8 years he was kind and caring to all. And was a good teacher to my son as a apprentice we both will miss him ,I will always keep him in my prayers.

From Johnny mills...

Deepest condolences Mary
David’s was a good man

From Derek Detwiler...

I was blessed to know David for so many years. Myself and so many others looked to him as a mentor. The most humble person I’ve ever met. Always cared for so many of his friends and loved his family. He will definitely be missed by many. My sincere condolences to Mary and the family.

From Roy C...

David was a kind soul! He was a wonderful father and family man. He was such a hard worker and never stopped until the job was done. My deepest condolences to Mary and the children. David will be missed- Roy C

From Ray McCorgary...

Hodge was eccentric and a ton of fun to work around! Definitely a colorful character! He was a working machine. He will certainly be missed in my books!! May he rest in peace.

From Greg Zabokrtsky...

Working with Dave was a pleasure when the going got tuff You could count on David to be be there at your side , worked with Dave early 90’s @ HUX

From Steve Berry...

I had the privilege of working with David on a couple of projects. We made a good team. I’m sorry to learn about his passing. He was a character and he will be missed.

Messages are closed.