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John Lee Hickey 1948 - 2022
John Lee Hickey

OLMITZ — John Lee Hickey, 73, died Nov. 21, 2022, at Clara Barton Hospital in Hoisington, Kan. The son of Elmer and Eleanor (Steinert) Hickey, he was born Dec. 7, 1948, in Hoisington, Kan. In 1967, John graduated from Otis High School. He then attended Salina Vo-Tech where he received his certification in diesel mechanics.

During the Vietnam War, John proudly served as an Army Specialist 4 in the United States Army.  

On July 22, 1988, he married the love of his life, Charlene M. Vonfeldt, at the courthouse in Great Bend. They later renewed their vows at the St. Ann’s Catholic Church in Olmitz, Kan.

A lifetime resident of Olmitz, John worked as a diesel mechanic, as a farmer, and as a backhoe operator. He was a member of St. Ann’s Catholic Church and of the Knights of Columbus Council #2100. Always known to strike up a conversation with anyone and to be quick with a joke, he made friends wherever he went. John enjoyed playing Tarock, golfing with his buddies in Claflin, and spending time with his family. Some of his fondest memories involved spending time with his many grandchildren, nieces, and nephews.

He is survived by his wife of 34 years, Charlene Hickey of the home; daughter, Shannon Schreiner and husband Brian of Hays; grandsons, Shawn Ballinger and fiancée MacKenzie Gianacopolos of Hays; John Schreiner and wife Melanie of Downs, and Jesse Schreiner of Russell; granddaughter Laura Schreiner and partner Rob of Blue Hill, Neb.; brothers-in-law, Stanley Vonfeldt and wife Nancy of Parker, Colo., Tom Vonfeldt and wife Nancy of Lincoln, Neb., and Tom Zorko and wife Sue of Omaha, Neb.; a sister-in-law, Mary Snider and husband Jim of Jefferson, Mo.; many great-grandchildren, cousins, nieces and nephews; and, most importantly, his favorite dog, Emily. He was preceded in death by his parents; a sister-in-law, Raeann Zorko; and two great-grandchildren, Shelby Schreiner and Sawyer Keller.

Per John’s request, cremation has taken place. Friends may sign a book at the funeral home from now until the service. Services will be Monday, Dec. 5th, 2022, at St. Ann’s Catholic Church, Olmitz, Kan. Rosary will begin at 10:30 a.m., led by the Knights of Columbus, with the Mass of Christian Burial at 11 a.m. celebrated by Father Anselm Eke, MSP. Inurnment will follow in St. Ann’s Cemetery with military honors conducted by the Fort Riley Army Honor Guard. Memorials may be made to the St. Ann’s Cemetery Fund, in care of Nicholson-Ricke Funeral Home, PO Box 146, Hoisington, KS 67544. Notices may be viewed and condolences sent at

Funeral arrangements provided by

Nicholson-Ricke Funeral Home

P.O. Box 146 

Hoisington, Kansas, 67544

Great Bend (Kan.) Tribune, Nov. 27, 2022