John Edward Hays

John Edward Hays, 72, passed away peacefully in his home in Lawrence, KS on June 27th, after a long battle with progressive multiple sclerosis.

John was born in 1951 in Sublette, KS to John and Charlotte Hays. He was an outstanding student and athlete at Sublette High School, excelling in football, basketball, and track. He enrolled at the University of Kansas in 1970 and joined the Delta Upsilon fraternity, where he made lifelong friends. John was very charismatic, creative, and extremely adventurous. In his early 20s, when he started feeling the beginning symptoms of MS, he decided to start traveling. He traveled many times to South America and Europe accompanied by friends and family, making many memories and new friends along the way. Eventually John returned to Sublette to help on the family farm, continuing his education at the local community college and also continuing his adventures. After his father passed, John took over the operation of the farm until he physically was unable to do so. He then returned to Lawrence where he lived at his home in North Lawrence until his passing.

John rarely complained about his predicament and fought his disease with tremendous strength, stubbornness, and grace. He was loved and admired by many friends and caregivers. As one of his friends said, “John was someone that you met once and wanted to be his best friend.”

Many thanks must be given to the wonderful folks at Douglas County Visiting Nurses Association for all the help, love, and care given to John and for the help from their wonderful hospice team. Also many thanks to all of John’s caregivers over the years with special thanks to Rachel, who cared for him this past year, and to Trish, who was able to spend the last few weeks with John helping him to stay in his home, which was his greatest wish.

A celebration of life will be held in Lawrence and a service in his hometown of Sublette, Kansas (dates to be determined). In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to your local visiting nurses association/hospice organization or a charity of your choice.

Messages & Condolences

From Sherry L Leonard...

God bless my cousin, John Edward Hays who blessed other people’s life.

From James H Schindler...

RIP John Edward. A cousin is a person’s first best friend. You will be missed a great deal by all the cousins.

From Sherri Farr Miner...

My heart is sad, and you will always be my Hero John Edward. A bright shining light in my heart always. You pointed to a yellow Easter Egg, after seeing how shy I was in kindergarten and standing on the sidewalk watching the other kids find the eggs. I took a couple of steps to the egg, picked it up, and looked at you. You smiled really big, and from then on always gave me that smile and beautiful friendship.

From Martha Ann Rogge...

Many good memories and times.

From Bradford Shotton...

RIP my friend.

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