Colin Alexander ‘Scotty’ Ovenstone

On Thursday, February 9th, 2023, Colin “Scotty” Alexander Diack Ovenstone, a beloved husband, father, brother, grandfather and great-grandfather passed away at age 91. He was born to Barbara and James Ovenstone in Aberdeen, Scotland on November 9th, 1931. Scotty is survived by his wife of over 36 years, Ginny; his sister, Edna; his daughter, Susie; his stepchildren, Mark and Dana; his 6 grandchildren, Brittany, Thomas Colin “TC”, Lindsay, Erin, Meghan, and Matt; his greatgrandchildren, Braxton, Georgia, and Eleanor; and his former wife, Jean. He is preceded in death by his beloved daughter, Beth Anne, and his stepson, Scott.

Scotty immigrated to the United States on his own at age 17. He proudly served as a Ground Radio and Teletype Operator in the US Air Force for 4 years. He was the owner of his business, Ovenstone Janitorial, and was a pillar of the community of Lawrence, KS. Scotty loved all things outdoors and playing with his grandchildren and great-grandchildren. He also loved watching the History Channel and had a vast knowledge of the American Civil War and World War 2.

Scotty was best known for being a devoted family man, his sense of humor, fierce patriotism, and his piercing blue eyes. He was an incredibly loving man who was incredibly easy to love. His memorial service will be held at Rumsey-Yost Funeral home on Friday, February 17th, 2023, at 1:00 pm.

Reta Mae Banks

Graveside Services for Reta Mae Banks, 85, Lawrence, will be 11am, Tuesday, February 21, 2023, at Oak Hill Cemetery. A visitation will be 6:30-7:30 Monday, at  Rumsey-Yost Funeral Home.

She died February 13, 2023, at her home.

Our Sweet Aunt Reta was called home to be reunited with her family on February 13, 2023.

Reta Mae Banks was born on March 12, 1937 in Lawrence Kansas to John Neal and Luella Banks.

Reta grew up in rural Douglas County where she was truly a country girl. Always helping feed the animals, working in the garden and gathering eggs from the chicken coup on the family farm. Her chores were not limited to the outdoors, as she would also help prepare meals and make her specialty, fresh pies for dessert.

She graduated from Liberty Memorial High School in 1955 and from there she went on to work in banking. She held many other positions throughout her lifetime, but the one she enjoyed was with the First Student Bus Barn. She was a secondary helper for kids with handicap needs for entering and exiting the bus. She would also help with trips out of town for away games. She left the Bus Barn in 2018 at the age of 81.

She was beautiful inside and out, always giving and caring to all who met her. She would help anyone in need without a second thought.

She dabbled in projects from crocheting, gardening as she loved her flowers, and even tried her hand at upholstery. She had many talents and hobbies and continued to make her doilies just before her passing. She will be missed by all that loved her.

Reta is survived by her nieces Diana Huseby (Richard Hird), Mary Banks, Sharon Banks Watson (Doug) and many great nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her parents John Neal and Luella Banks, Brother John Banks, Sister Betty Otto.

There will be a visitation on Monday February 20 from 6:30 – 7:30 at Rumsey Yost Funeral Home.

A graveside service will be held Tuesday February 21, at 11:00 at Oak Hill Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers Reta has requested that contributions be sent to the Humane Society.

Rita’s family would like to express their appreciation for Rita’s team at Gentiva Hospice. Diana and Richard thank you also personally for all your help we couldn’t have done it without you.

Barbara Jean Currant

A Visitation for Barbara Jean Currant, 82, Lawrence, will be 2-4 pm, Sunday, February 19, 2023, at Rumsey-Yost Funeral Home.

Barbara Jean Currant passed away on Sunday, February 12 surrounded by her family.

She was born December 8, 1940 to Glen and Lauretta (Bame) Shoemaker.

She is preceded in death by husband Dale.  She is survived by three children, David Currant (Kathy), Diane Patterson (Kenny), and Steve Currant, all of Lawrence.  5 grandchildren, 7 great grandchildren and 3 great, great grandchildren.  A sister Sharon Gaskill (Donnie) of Copan, Oklahoma, brothers Bob (Peg), Phoenix, Arizona and Roy (Gert) of Omaha, Nebraska.  She is preceded in death by brothers Donald and Mike.


Ronald Guy ‘Ron’ Barnes

Ronald Guy Barnes passed away on February 10, 2023 at his home in Kimberling City, Missouri.

Ron was born in Pittsburg, Kansas on October 12, 1939 to Mildred Rena (Pilkenton) and Guy Everett Barnes. He attended schools in Pittsburg and Lawrence, Kansas. He married Karen Kay Lewis and had two daughters, Kimberly and Melody.

Ron worked several jobs as a young man before settling into a career with the Kroger Company. After retirement from Kroger he went to work for the Lawrence Douglas County Housing Authority. Upon his second retirement, he decided that he still wasn’t quite ready to “sit around” and took on a job as a school bus driver for the Lawrence School District, which resulted in numerous friendships.

After a whirlwind romance, he married the love of his life, Donna Veree Schultz on February 2, 1996. They recently celebrated 27 loving years together.

Once Ron and Donna decided they wanted to retire (for real), they moved to their happy place near Branson, Missouri where they have lived life to the fullest for the past four years. Ron was involved in their local homeowner’s association serving in various leadership roles, including President.

Ron loved to travel, read, and his fix-it skills were legendary among family and friends. He had funny stories and fond memories of epic trips as he explored much of the west and southwest USA. One trip that may have topped all others was when Ron and Donna spent several weeks exploring Alaska by land and water.

Ron is survived by his wife, Donna; sister, Barbara Babboni; daughters, Kim (Andy) Booth and Melody Barnes; stepchildren, Delbert Schultz, Sara Schultz and Kristi Thompson; 17 grandchildren; 13 great grandchildren (4 great grandchildren on the way), and numerous nieces and nephews.

Ron was preceded in death by his parents, stepson, Kenneth Frederick Schultz, and great granddaughter Aubree Ann Martin.

A service to celebrate a life well lived will be held at Rumsey-Yost Funeral Home on February 27th at 11:00 am.

Ron had love for animals, particularly dogs and cats. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to your local animal rescue organization.

Lt Col James Rollin ‘Jim’ Hemphill

Lt Col James R Hemphill, 89, passed peacefully at home on Wednesday, February 8th, 2023, surrounded by family. A Celebration of Life will be held at a later date.

Jim was born and grew up in Lawrence, KS. He was the son of Thornton and Helen (Cleveland) Hemphill. At a young age, he and his sister Charlene were raised by their grandparents after the death of their mother.

Jim graduated from the University of Kansas in 1954 with a degree in business and wife Carolyn Laing.

After college, he spent 2 years of active duty flying jets in the Air Force and 26 years in the Missouri Air National Guard flying refueler and cargo aircrafts. He and Carolyn met many of their lifelong friends during his time in the Air National Guard. Jim and his air force buddies enjoyed taking in the local sites and the local beers during their travels.

He also enjoyed building custom homes.

Survivors include, high school sweetheart and wife of 68 years, Carolyn, daughters Wendy Stauffer (Ron), Jennifer Hemphill, and Gretchen Windholz (Tim), all of Lawrence; Grandchildren Anna van Haandel, Lake Villa, IL; Ryan Stauffer, Heidi Webb, Hannah Windholz, and James Windholz, of Lawrence; Great-Grandchildren Jasper van Haandel, Sydney van Haandel, and Milo Webb.

Survivors also include sister Charlene Fritzel, Lawrence; half-brothers Richard Hemphill, De Soto, KS; and Roger Hemphill, Overland Park, KS.

He was preceded in death by his half-brother David Hemphill of Lawrence.

In lieu of flowers, the family prefers that you support the organization of your choice.

Lt Col James R. Hemphill has flown west.

Gary Lee Husted

On Thursday, February 9, 2023, the Husted family lost their hero, Gary Lee Husted. Gary, surrounded by his wife, children, and grandchildren, passed away peacefully at his home.

Gary was born March 3, 1944, in Lawrence, Kansas, to Roscoe Husted and Beatrice LaVere Husted (Sutton).

On February 6, 1965, Gary married the love of his life, Patricia Wilson and not long after, their sons Kurtiss and Kory were born. He built their home in 1979 where he raised his family, cared for his mother-in-law, and hosted gatherings that still bring fond memories to so many.

Gary worked hard every day to provide a good life for his family; working the majority of his career at All Star Dairy and then retiring from the Douglas County Maintenance Department after 17 years in 2006.

Gary loved his backyard and enjoyed gardening, hunting, fishing, rebuilding cars, and perfecting his swimming pool to make it a summer oasis for family and friends to enjoy.

Gary was preceded in death by his parents Roscoe and LaVere Husted, brother, Ronald Dean Shirk, and sister, Dolores Louise Kilburn.

He will lovingly be remembered by his wife, Patricia, sons, Kurtiss Husted (Debbie) and Kory Husted,  granddaughters, Danielle Husted and Kassidy Husted, step-granddaughters,  Ashli Smith (Justin) and Jessica Martin (Nathan), sisters, Donna Kilburn and Joyce Bowen (Charlie), five step-great grandchildren, numerous extended family members, and countless friends.

A Private Celebration of Life will be held at a later date and time for family and friends.

In lieu of flowers, the family would appreciate donations made to:

Great Plains SPCA (nonprofit animal shelter)

For online giving:

Or mail to: 5428 Antioch Dr., Merriam, KS 66202



Douglas County Visiting Nurses

Mail to: 200 Maine Street, Suite C, Lawrence, KS 66044

LaDonna June (French) Commons

Funeral services for LaDonna June (French) Commons, 59, Herington, Kan., will be at 2 pm Thursday at Rumsey-Yost Funeral Home & Crematory.  A visitation will be held from 1 pm until service time. Cremation will follow the service. LaDonna passed away Thursday, Feb. 9, 2023, at her home in Herington.

The youngest of four girls, LaDonna was born May 5, 1963, in Lawrence, Kansas, the daughter of Robert and Patricia Wiggins French. She graduated Lawrence High School and later attended Johnson County Community College. She married Dana Commons on December 31, 1997. She spent a number of years working for the Lawrence Humane Society as a vet tech and later for the City of Lawrence. She never met a stranger and enjoyed engaging with the public throughout her working years. In her spare time she enjoyed training animals, working in her garden, hunting, and attending music events.

LaDonna is survived by her husband, Dana Commons of Herington, Kansas; and her only daughter, Albany Shabre Cummings (Lucas) of Topeka, her three grandchildren, Olivia Cummings, Owen Cummings and Cora Cummings, her sisters Lee French, Laura Newberry, and Lisa Clark (Alan). She was preceded in death by her parents, Robert and Patricia French.

Memorial contributions are suggested to the Lawrence Humane Society.

Dean Sanders

Services for Dean Sanders, 85 of Winchester, Kansas. Services will be held at Rumsey-Yost funeral Home. February 25, 2023, at 11:00 am.

Mr. Sanders passed peacefully at home. He was born in Laurel, Montana in 1938. He graduated from Lyndon High School in 1956. He attended and graduated from Emporia State University 1961. He worked to further his education at Washburn University where he received a Bachelor of Science in Nursing followed by earning certification as a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist. Completing his education in 1977.

He is survived by his wife Mary Sanders. Three children from a previous marriage. Stacy (David) Dickson, Scott (Tammy)Sanders, Shelly (Edward) Newman. Three grandchildren and two great grandchildren.

He spent his career as a CRNA working in hospitals and health care facilities throughout Northeast Kansas. After retirement Dean enjoyed traveling and his many hobbies. He lived the remainder of his life in Winchester.

Patricia Pierce Kells

Patricia Pierce Kells of Lawrence, Kansas, passed away peacefully on February 5, 2023, at the age of 83.

Pat was best known for her quick-witted humor, love of her family, passion for travel, and lifetime dedication to education and community service.

Pat is survived by three children, Tara Edwards Keltner (Steve) of Pettigrew, Arkansas; Kassie Edwards Nieters (Larry) of Lawrence, Kansas, and Allan Kells (Jill) of Parkville, Missouri; her brother, Glenn Pierce (Gunilla) of Olathe, Kansas; and six grandchildren, Sarah Edwards, Kyle Edwards, Molly Keltner, Tatum Kells, Ava Kells, and Sloane Kells. She was preceded in death by her son, Brad Edwards.

The youngest of two children, Pat was born December 8, 1939, in Denver, Colorado, to Mildred Pierce and Glenn Q. Pierce. The family moved to Kansas and lived in Olathe and Prairie Village until Pat was in high school. They then moved to Lawrence where Mildred opened Ober’s Junior Miss clothing store. Pat enjoyed modeling for the store and her love for fashion continued throughout her life.

Pat married Frank Edwards in 1959 and they had three children, Tara, Brad, and Kassie. She later married Al Kells (deceased), and had one child, Allan.

Pat graduated from University of Kansas with a Bachelors Degree in Education in 1967 and a Masters Degree in Special Education Administration in 1975. Pat was a member of Delta Gamma sorority, where she met several life-long friends. She also became an avid Kansas basketball fan.

Pat had a distinguished career in education and community service. She loved her work and the people with whom she worked. The first part of her career was spent in the Lawrence public school district, where she served as a teacher and administrator and was credited with making groundbreaking changes to the way special education students were integrated into the school. This work had an extremely positive impact on these students and their families, who continued to seek her out decades later to thank her.

Pat then spent time in higher education as faculty for both undergraduate and graduate level courses, as university-wide coordinator of grants at Emporia State University and as the Associate Director for the Center for Educational Research and Service. She served as a Special Education Program Consultant for the Kansas State Department of Education and chaired two task forces for the U.S. Department of Education. Pat also authored numerous publications and research papers and taught a course in London on comparative British and American special education.

In 1991, a second career was launched when Pat was asked by the Kansas State Department of Education and Governor Joan Finney to develop a plan to be submitted for funding by the National and Community Service Act of 1990. This started a two-decade period where she passionately advocated for community service and built programs that became models for national and international programs.

She served as the Executive Director of both the Kansas Volunteer Commission and the Kansas Office for Community Service, was a founder of the Community Service Foundation, and worked closely with three Kansas Governors as well as state, local, and national agencies to grow volunteerism in Kansas.

Pat later led an initiative for Governor Finney to develop a volunteer program for Kansas State Retirees and worked with Governors Bill Graves and Kathleen Sebelius on programs that involved reforming welfare and supporting military families through volunteerism.

Pat also played key roles with multiple national organizations, including The Commission on National and Community Service, the Points of Light Foundation, the National Association of State Offices of Volunteerism, Grantmakers Forum, the National Association of Conservation Corps, and Youth Volunteer Corps of America and Canada. She also had the honor to serve alongside President George Bush and Adele Hall on the Points of Light Foundation Board.

In addition to serving on volunteer foundations, Pat directly volunteered for Junior League, school-based service learning programs for the disabled, mentoring teenage youth, and working with county and state mental health programs.

Pat loved to travel and cherished her time at Hotel Boca Chica in Acapulco, where she was a regular and a favorite of the owner and staff. Pat never knew a stranger, told great jokes, and loved to laugh.

Pat’s passion for work, travel, and volunteerism was only surpassed by the pride she took in her family. She loved to brag about her children and grandchildren—and her family is equally proud of her.

She will be dearly missed by her family and friends.

A visitation will be held to celebrate Pat’s life on Saturday, February 11, 2023, from 2:00 – 4:00 p.m. at Rumsey-Yost Funeral Home , 601 Indiana St. Lawrence, KS 66044.

A private inurnment will take place at Memorial Park Cemetery, Lawrence.

In lieu of flowers the family suggests volunteering or contributing to your favorite community service organization in Pat’s memory.