Neil J. Salkind

Neil J. Salkind, 70, passed away from complications related to melanoma on Saturday at his home in Lawrence.  The son of Harry and Irene Salkind, he was born in Newark, N.J., where he grew up and attended Weequahic High School.

He received his Ph.D. in human development from the University of Maryland, and after teaching for 35 years at the University of Kansas became a professor emeritus. After retiring he continued to collaborate with colleagues and mentor students.

Neil was a prolific writer and editor. He delivered more than 150 professional papers and presentations; wrote more than 100 trade and textbooks; edited several encyclopedias; was editor of Child Development Abstracts and Bibliography for 13 years; and aided many other writers in their search for publishers. He had at least three of his letters to the editor of the New York Times published, an accomplishment of which he was exceedingly proud.

Neil enjoyed letterpress printing, reading, running with the Mad Dogs and later swimming with the Lawrence River City Sharks, baking brownies, poking around old Volvos, and being with his family and friends. He volunteered with numerous local charitable organizations and served on a number of nonprofit boards.

Services will be at 2:00 p.m., Monday, November 20, 2017 at the Lawrence Jewish Community Center. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorials to Willow Domestic Violence Center, The University of Kansas Cancer Center, and the Lawrence Jewish Community Center in care of the Rumsey-Yost Funeral Home, PO Box 1260, Lawrence KS 66044.

Neil is survived by his wife, Leni; daughter, Sara, of Alexandria, VA; son Micah and son-in-law Ted, of Providence, RI; sister Phyllis and brother-in-law Seymour, of Dallas, TX; his sister-in-law Suara Welitoff, of Cambridge, MA; nephews, nieces, countless friends, mentees, associates, and his beloved golden doodle, Bella. His boundless energy and curiosity will be missed. So will his brownies and challah.

Georgia Shelby

Graveside services for Georgia R. Shelby, 103, Lawrence, will be at 10 am Thursday at Oak Hill Cemetery. Georgia died Monday, November 13, 2017, at her home, surrounded by family.

She was born February 22, 1914, in Albany, Mo., the daughter of John and Lizzie McClure. She worked for SRS as a homemaker. She previously had worked at Tension Envelope in Kansas City and Samaritan Lodge Rest Home in Lawrence. In her spare time, she enjoyed reading and watching KU basketball.

She married Orville L. Shelby. He preceded her in death in 1975. She was also preceded in death by numerous children and siblings. Survivors include a brother in law, Tom Harmon, Lawrence, and a daughter in law, Glenda Shelby, Lawrence.

The family suggests memorial contributions to the Georgia Shelby Memorial Fund, in care of the funeral home, 601 Indiana St., Lawrence, KS, 66044.

Donald Lee Engel

Donald L. Engel, 81, of Lawrence, Kansas passed away November 14th, 2017 at Pioneer Ridge Nursing Home.

Don was born June 20th, 1936, in Hastings, NE to Waldorf and Clara (Rundall) Engel. He was raised in Harvard, NE and graduated from Harvard High School in 1953. He worked for Farmland Industries in Hastings, NE and Lawrence, KS as the Maintenance Supervisor and retired from there in 1998.

In 1955, Don married Shirley Ann McCune and the two celebrated their 62nd anniversary in May of this year. Don and Shirley moved to Lawrence KS in 1976, when Don transferred to the Farmland plant in Lawrence. In 1985, they moved to a farm in the Pomona KS area. Don enjoyed being on the farm where he raised cattle, some crops and put up hay. Don also owned and operated his bulldozer which he thoroughly enjoyed!! In 2010, Don and Shirley retired from the farm and moved to Lawrence due to Don’s declining health. Don’s increased lack of mobility led to him moving into Pioneer Ridge Nursing Home in 2014.

Don was very active in the community of Harvard, NE. He served as president of the school board, and was a member of the Harvard Volunteer Fire Department. As president of the Harvard Lions Club, Don helped to procure Harvard’s first emergency unit (ambulance). He was also president of the Harvard Community Development Corporation remodeling, building and selling houses in an effort to improve the community. He was a member of the Masons in Harvard, Nebraska and the Scottish Rite in Lawrence, KS. He was a member of the Lions Club for over 50 years starting in Nebraska transferring his membership to Kansas and receiving the Melvin Jones Fellow Award in 2012.

Don was preceded in death by his parents and a sister, Joann (Engel) Asmus. Survivors include his wife Shirley, four sons, Donald Jr. and wife Jeanie of Kearney, NE, Jerald and wife Barbara of Pomona, KS, Doug and wife Mary of Joplin, MO, and Dennis and wife Brenda of Kansas City, MO. Nine grandchildren, Tyler Engel and wife Leslie, Tanner Engel and wife Cassi, Renae Mitchell and husband Casey, Jamie (Engel) Dahlberg, Doug Engel Jr. and wife Ellen, Brandon Engel, Ashlynn Engel, Matthew Perez-Engel and Lauren Perez-Engel. Seventeen great grandchildren Savannah, Camdon, Maryn, Lucy, Nolan, Landry, Selah, Lainy, Libby, Londyn, Dax, Jake, John, Trent, Alex, Audrey, and Nora. Above all, Don valued the time spent with his family, especially watching his children, grandchildren and great grandchildren progress through the stages of their lives.

Visitation will be Friday at the Rumsey-Yost Funeral Home in Lawrence, KS where the family will receive friends from 6 to 7 PM. The funeral will also be held at Rumsey-Yost Funeral Home on Saturday from 12:30 PM. Burial and graveside services will be Sunday at the Harvard Cemetery in Harvard, NE at 2 PM.

The family suggests that memorial contributions be made to the Muscular Dystrophy Association or the First United Methodist Church of Lawrence, KS sent in care of the Rumsey-Yost Funeral Home, 601 Indiana Street, Lawrence, KS 66044.

Donald K. Taylor

Donald K. Taylor, 89, of Avon Park, FL passed away November 7th, 2017 at Florida Hospital Tampa.

Don was born July 26th, 1928, in Arkansas City, KS to Delmar D and Zetta Mae (Williams) Taylor. He was raised on their Kay County Oklahoma farm and graduated from Newkirk (Oklahoma) High School. He enlisted in the Army in August of 1946 and served his country as a Military MP in Korea until he was honorably discharged in January of 1948. After being discharged from the Army, Don attended the National Institute of Dry Cleaners in Maryland and went on to own and operate ABC Cleaners in McPherson, KS for a number of years.

In 1955, Don married Carol Johnston and the two celebrated their 62nd anniversary last January. Don and Carol moved to Lawrence in 1956 where Don began work at the DuPont plant in nearby Tecumseh, KS. In his many roles there he contributed to a variety of departments until he fully retired in 1991. While at DuPont, Don also enjoyed a part-time job at Anderson Rentals in Lawrence where he was able to utilize his inherent mechanical abilities.

In 1977 Don and Carol built a home at Lone Star Lake, south of Lawrence where they set up residence while not out on the road in their RV exploring the United States. Don and Carol relocated to Wauchula, Florida in 1996 and eventually to Avon Park. Don loved Florida for its beaches, warm weather and fresh oranges. Don was also an avid enthusiast of live Bluegrass and Country music, Western Novels, Professional Bull Riding, and the local KU / KC Sports teams. He passionately supported his Church, the American Legion, the Wounded Warrior Project, and several Christian charities.

Above all, Don valued the time spent with his family including his many brothers and sisters, nieces and nephews – and especially watching his children, grand-children and great grand-children grow.

In addition to his parents, Don is preceded in death by his grandson Clifton James, sisters Ruby, Mabel and Opal Mae and brothers Harold, Dale and Ray. Survivors include his wife Carol Taylor; brother Roy Taylor, KS and sister Alice Faye Mochel, CA; children Mitchell Taylor and his wife Mona, Casper, WY; Teresa Latimer and husband Darren, St. Peters, MO; Gregory Taylor, Gardner, KS and Bradley Taylor and wife Emily, Lawrence, KS. Don is also survived by five grandchildren and their spouses: Kelly Krauss and husband Nathan, Brian Stevens and wife Amy, Heather Irwin and husband Justin, Zachery Taylor and wife Ashley, Joseph Blake Taylor and Tabbetha Lay; and 12 great-grandchildren: Zach Jr, Raymond, Gabrielle, Xavier, Lexie, Mackenzie, Tristan, Caleb, Devin, Aiden, Liam and Finn.

A viewing will be held Sunday, November 19th from 9 – 10am at Rumsey-Yost Funeral Home in Lawrence followed by a Memorial at 10 and internment at Washington Creek Cemetery, 607 E 550 Rd, near Lone Star Lake. Reception to follow at the American Legion Dorsey-Liberty Post 14, 3408 W 6th St, Lawrence.

In lieu of flowers, please send memorials to the National World War II Museum, 945 Magazine Street, New Orleans, LA: – under Tribute Donation option. Online condolences should be sent to:

Mary E. Tate

Graveside inurnment for Mary Evelyn Tate, 82, Lawrence, will be 2 pm, Friday, at Washington Creek Cemetery.

She died Sunday, November 12, 2017, at Lawrence Memorial Hospital.

Mary was born April 11, 1935, in Lone Star, KS, the daughter of Fred C. and Cora B. Hoover Flory.  She graduated from Liberty Memorial High School in 1953.

She was a lifelong member of the Lone Star Church of the Brethren.  Mary enjoyed knitting and crocheting.  She belonged to a knitting group for over 50 Years.  Mary was a true fan of KU Basketball.  She enjoyed visiting with her cousins at their monthly lunch.

Mary married her husband of 64 years, Lanny R. Tate on October 4, 1953, he survives of the home.

Other survivors include their children Steven Tate(Susan), Silver Lake, KS, Susan Turner, Lawrence, Dawn Tate(Terri Jacobson, Caregiver), Lawrence; grandchildren Demetria White (Warren), Eudora, KS, Megan Whitney (James), Pittsburg, KS, Pete Turner (Rachel) Lenexa, KS, Lauren Tate (Bill), Kansas City, MO, Elijah Turner, Lawrence, KS; Great grandchildren, Maliya White, Zoey White, Audrey Whitney; Flory sisters, Irene Williams, Jacksonville, FL, Belle Nelson, St. Augustine, FL, Lucille Batson (Jim) McPherson, KS.

Mary is preceded in death by her parents, and siblings Francis Flory, Lucinda Rose Flory, Ben Flory, Lois Hanna, and Virgil Flory.

Memorial contributions may be made to Community Living Opportunities (CLO), sent in care of Rumsey-Yost Funeral Home, 601 Indiana Street, Lawrence, KS 66044.

Online condolences may be made at

Roberta Lynn Hedges

Services for Roberta Lynn Hedges, 67, Lawrence, will be 10:00 a.m. Monday, at Rumsey-Yost Funeral Home. Burial will follow at Maple Hill Cemetery in Kansas City, Kansas.

Ms. Hedges died Wednesday, November 8, 2017, at Lawrence Memorial Hospital.

She was born May 13, 1950, in Kansas City, Missouri, the daughter of Robert Lee and Zola Patricia Cates Hedges. She graduated from Lawrence High School in 1968, and has been a resident of Lawrence since 1958.

Ms. Hedges was employed by Rusty’s IGA in 1967 which was purchased by Alvin Joe Schmitberger in 1989. She continued working at the grocery store and later at Alvin’s Wine & Spirits as a book keeper.

She is survived by a brother, Richard Lee Hedges and wife Ginny, niece Julie Lowrance; several cousins; and many loving friends.

She was preceded in death by her parents.

Friends may call from 12:00 p.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday at the funeral home, where the family will receive them from 3-5 p.m. Sunday.

The family suggests memorials to the Lawrence Humane Society, sent in care of the funeral home.

Viola Ray Thomas

Memorial services for Viola Ray Thomas, 77, Winchester, will be 11 am, Saturday, November 18, 2017, at Living Water Church, 13960 Highway K92, Oskaloosa, KS 66066.

She was the Daughter of Mabel Marie Clark and Grady Jesse Beard , born on the day of July 3rd 1940, she was blessed with a family of three sisters, and two brothers, Kathleen Pearl Kennett , Mattie Lea Kelly, Grady Clifton , Juanita Jeanette Boles, Thomas Leonard, all have passed.  She has a daughter Debra Kay McClelland, a son Todd Allen Thomas, and three step children Nancy O’Herron, Dave Thomas, and John Thomas.  She was married to Loyd Burroughs, for a short period. Then remarried to Alvin Clifford Thomas, he preceded her in death May 1998. She was blessed with many Grandchildren and Great Grandchildren.

She was a great wife, mother, and friend to those that new her.  She worked hard in many jobs over the years that she was proud of.  She was a guard at Hercules army plant in Desoto, a line operator at Hallmarks Cards, ran a line at Aeroquip making pistons for large trucks, an Auto Mechanic and in the AC refrigeration department at KU.  She was strong and determined to make it in a world that was hard for women at the time, she was the first woman hired at KU in the refrigeration department and it made her proud.  She survived breast Cancer, a heart attack, a stroke that took her mobility. Last she died of overran Cancer after a battle of about a year and a half.  She found Jesus early in life and recently renewed her faith. Now she is in heaven with all of her loved ones that died previously.

The family suggests memorial contributions made in memory of Viola Ray Thomas to be made to Great Lakes Hospice, sent in care of Rumsey-Yost Funeral Home, 601 Indiana Street, Lawrence, KS 66044, or made online at

Melvin L. Dark

Graveside services for Melvin LeRoy Dark, 73, Lecompton, will be at 2 pm Saturday at Maple Grove Cemetery, Lecompton, with Pastor Rob Ernest officiating. Melvin died Wednesday, Nov. 8, 2017, at Stormont-Vail Health Care, Topeka.

He was born Dec. 15, 1943, in Lawrence, the son of Clayton L. and Irma Maxine Glenn Dark. He graduated from Lecompton High School, and served a tour in the Army National Guard during the Vietnam War. Melvin was an equipment operator for the Kansas Department of Transportation for 35 years. He was a member of the Lecompton Historical Society and the Lecompton United Methodist Church. In his spare time, he enjoyed the outdoors, especially hunting, fishing, and archery.

Melvin married VeNora B. Farnsworth on Apr. 2, 1966, at Lecompton UMC. She survives of the home. Other survivors include two sons, Dustin Dark and wife Susan, Lecompton, and Chad Dark and wife Annie, Lecompton; three siblings, David Dark, Sherri Neill (Craig), and Barbara Haney, all of Lecompton; seven grandchildren, Tyler Dark, Bonner Dark, Mark Breuninger (Jennifer), Austin Breuninger, Tulsa Dark, Colten Dark, and Sam Sealbach; and two great grandchildren, Taylor and Nevyn Gold.

Friends may call from noon to 8 pm Friday at Rumsey-Yost Funeral Home, where the family will receive them from 6 to 8 pm. Memorial contributions are suggested to the Lecompton Historical Society or the Lecompton UMC, in care of the funeral home, 601 Indiana St., Lawrence, KS, 66044.

Sheila L. Schmitendorf

Visitation for Sheila L. Schmitendorf, 91, Lawrence, will be held from 2:00 – 4:00 pm, Saturday, November 18, 2017 at the Rumsey-Yost Funeral Home.

Mrs. Schmitendorf died Sunday, November 5, 2017, at her home.

She was born February 18, 1926 in Alma, Kansas, the daughter of Howard and Eva Blossom who preceded her in death.

She was a child care provider for many years and retired from Hallmark Cards in 1991.

She married George D. Schmitendorf, Jr., July 25, 1948 at the Danforth Chapel in Lawrence. He died August 1, 2008.

Sheila was the 10th of 13 siblings. Brothers preceding her in death are Homer, Floyd, Taylor, Hubert, and Howard Blossom. Sisters preceding her in death are Buelah Ryman, Esther Avery, Violet Ford, Daisy Hemming, Lavella Keltz and Iris Vlasschaert. She is survived by one brother Lyle Dean Blossom and wife Dinny.

She is also survived by her five children George D. Schmitendorf III, Ocala, FL.; Chester A. Schmitendorf, Lawrence; Sandra J. Cordill (Dean), Topeka; Thomas E. Schmitendorf (Jennifer), Lawrence; and Rose Kopf, St. Petersburg, FL. She has seven grandchildren Becky Kramer (Bill); Jessica Huston (Scott); Kalem, Aleese, and Chase Kopf; and Dallas and Kendall Schmitendorf and nine great-grandchildren.

The family suggests memorials to the Ballard Community Center in Lawrence and may be sent in care of the funeral home.