Edna J. Van Schmus

A memorial service for Edna J. Van Schmus will be at 11:00 am on Saturday, April 15 at Plymouth Congregational Church, Lawrence. Edna passed away in her home in the presence of family on Thursday morning, February 23, 2023, after a prolonged illness.

Edna was born in July of 1938 to Arthur and Elizabeth Evison. She grew up in Liverpool, England during and following WWII. Although the years were difficult, Edna had fond memories of growing up surrounded by a close-knit extended family. Edna did her primary and middle schooling in Liverpool, then emigrated with her family to Montreal, Canada and then Chicago, where she graduated from Kelly High School.

After graduation, Edna worked for United Airlines, then transferred to Los Angeles where her father moved the family once again. In 1959 Edna resumed schooling, enrolling in the Nursing School at Huntington Memorial Hospital, Pasadena & Pasadena City College. At this time, Edna also became a U.S. Citizen

In 1960 Edna met her future husband, William R. (Randy) Van Schmus, who was a Senior at Caltech in Pasadena. They were married in Monterey Park, CA on June 30, 1961, and made their home in Pasadena where Edna completed her schooling in 1962. She then worked as a Registered Nurse for Huntington Memorial Hospital while Randy finished his PhD at UCLA. In 1964 the couple moved to Bedford, Massachusetts where Randy served on active duty as a research officer in the United States Air Force and Edna enjoyed the comradery of the other young Air Force families.

In August 1967 they moved to Lawrence where Randy took a faculty position in Geology at the University of Kansas. Edna became an active member of the community lending her time and talents to local schools, scout troops, the university, and Plymouth Church. She also enjoyed several social groups, through which she made many treasured friends. She resumed her professional career as a nurse at the Pediatrics office of Drs. Branson & Gilles and continued pediatric nursing until 1996, when she retired after more than 20 years.

Edna was a woman of many talents and interests. She was a skilled craftswoman and is especially remembered for her beautiful needle work, including knitting, crocheting, embroidering and quilting. She also enjoyed both cooking and baking and took great pride in entertaining and serving traditional holiday meals. An avid traveler, Edna enjoyed adventures throughout the U.S. and England in addition to Europe, Australia, New Zealand, and Brazil.

Edna was beloved by many and is survived by her husband, Randy, of the home; daughter-in-law Nina Van Schmus; son, Derek (Pam) VanSchmus; daughter Jennifer (Michael) Chartier; grandchildren Emily, Anthony, Devin, Molly, and Olivia and a brother-in-law, sisters-in-law and many nieces, nephews and cousins. She was preceded in death by son Brian Van Schmus, sister Pauline Dolinski, and her parents.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorials to VNA & VNA Hospice of Douglas County or Lawrence Habitat for Humanity sent in care of Rumsey-Yost Funeral Home, P.O. Box 1260, Lawrence, KS 66044. Online condolences may be left at rumsey-yost.com