HUTCHINSON -- Michael K. "Big Mike" Preston took to the heavenly highway on July 29. The self-proclaimed "King of the Road" was born on April 11, 1947 in Stafford, Kans., to Edgar T. and Monica [DeBusk] Preston. Mike's formative years were spent in Macksville, Kans., where his one-of-a-kind personality began to take shape. After graduating from Macksville High School in 1965, Mike volunteered to serve four years in the United States Air Force. In 1975 he enlisted in the United States Army, and served his country an additional four years.
LARNED -- Ryan Patrick McGinness, 32, died July 27, at Hays. Born Feb. 1, 1980 in Great Bend, he was the son of James J. Jr. and Sharon Elaine Lloyd May McGinness. A lifetime area resident he was a Rig Operator for Professional Pulling at Hays.He was of the Catholic faith.
MACKSVILLE - Eston Piland, 83, died July 25 at Sterling House in Great Bend. Born Aug. 20, 1928 in Macksville, he was the son of Russell H. and Alta M. (Dykes) Piland. A resident of Great Bend for eleven years, he lived most of his life in Macksville where he was a farmer and stockman and a graduate of Macksville High School. On April 26, 1950, he married Patty R. (Standish) in Hutchinson. She survives of the home.
LARNED – Abby Louise Trapp Prescott, 22, died July 25 at Larned. She was born Nov. 6, 1989, at Great Bend, the daughter of Louis and Loretta Torrez Trapp. A 2008 graduate of Larned High School, she was the Outstanding Girl Athlete & Football Homecoming Queen. A lifetime area resident, she was most recently employed by USD 495 as a paraprofessional until her health prevented her from working.
PAWNEE ROCK - Clay Steffen Schmidt, 52, died July 24 at his home in Pawnee Rock. Born June 14, 1960 in Larned he was the son of Jarold and Ruth Petersen Schmidt. A lifetime area resident, he sold auto parts at Carquest. On March 26, 1983 he married Crystal Davidson in Larned. She survives.
ODIN - Anna M. Boor, 98, died July 22 at Great Bend Health and Rehabilitation Center. Born Nov. 4, 1913 in Odin, she was the daughter of Joseph V. and Frances M. (Tinkel) Jenisch. On April 23, 1941 she married Nick F. Boor in Odin. He died on June 25, 1998. A lifetime resident of Odin, she was a retired homemaker and farmer.
LYONS - Carolyn Sue Brown, 68, died July 21 in Great Bend. Born June 1, 1944 in Shidler, Okla. she was the daughter of Homer Walter and Clara (Clapp) Spencer. On June 23, 1961 she married Dearl D. Brown in Lyons. He died on Feb. 11, 2009. A resident of Great Bend for the last five years, formerly of Lyons, she was employed in retail management and was an Army wife.
ST. JOHN - James "Jim" Melvin Tucker, 66, died July 21 at his home in St. John. Born on Feb. 8, 1946 in Stafford, he was the son of Melvin A. and Ellen E. (Branham) Tucker. A life-long resident of St. John, he was an oil field worker and case manager for Rosewood Services in Great Bend. On Sept. 20, 1970, he married Donna M. Blanding at St. John. She survives of the home.
HAYS - Melven Joseph Herl, 86, of Hays, died July 21 at Wheatland Nursing Center in Russell. Born June 21, 1926 in Antonino, he was the son of John J. and Caroline (Klaus) Herl. On June 2, 1947 he married Esther Sauer. She preceded him in death in 1999. He moved to Russell from the Smoky Hill Rehabilitation Center in Salina, where he had been for nearly a year. He was the owner of Mel Herl Electric and a partner in Herl Brothers Cars. He was a musician with the Mel Hall Orchestra, was involved in band promotions and enjoyed gardening.