Bertie McConnell

Mrs. Donald McConnell, Bertie, died on February 21, 2012 at Lawrence Memorial Hospital. 

Bertie Grace McConnell was born on October 15, 1921 in St. Louis, Missouri, the daughter of Bertis and Grace Ella Stone Ross.  She grew up in Topeka, Kansas and attended Washburn University prior to moving to Lawrence in 1942. 

She was employed in the Personnel Department of Hercules Powder Company during World War II.  She married Donald McConnell, May 22, 1944 in Lincoln, Nebraska. Don preceded her in death on November 5, 2006.

For several years she conducted classes in decorative painting and decoupage at McConnell Lumber Company.  She attended Plymouth Congregational Church in Lawrence for over 65 years and was a member of Plymouth Women.  She was a member of Beta Sigma Phi and President and later advisor to Alpha Gamma Chapter.  She was elected President of Beta Sigma Phi City Counsel. Bertie was a member of the University Women’s Club and an Associate Life Member of the Kansas University Alumni Association and the Endowment Society.  She was honored to join the Washburn University Chapter of Zeta Tau Alpha, as a ninety year-old pledge and was featured on the television show, Anderson, in an interview by Anderson Cooper.  This noteworthy event was publicized in numerous newspapers, magazines, web-sites and U-Tube.

Bertie is survived by a daughter, Judith McConnell-Farmer and her husband, Weymouth, of Topeka.  Her son, Donald (Chip) McConnell, Jr. of Lawrence and wife, Connie, reside Lawrence.  A son, Craig preceded her in death in 1986.  She had six grandchildren and one great-grandchild.  She is also survived by Doris and Dean Owens of Lawrence, two nieces and one nephew. 

The funeral is scheduled for 11 a.m. Monday, February 27, 2012 at Plymouth Congregational Church with burial to follow at Memorial Park Cemetery in Lawrence. 

Family will greet friends from 1 – 3 p.m. on Sunday at Warren-McElwain Mortuary in Lawrence.

Memorials may be made in Bertie’s name to the Zeta Tau Alpha Sorority – Washburn University Chapter, or Plymouth Congregational Church and may be sent in care of the mortuary.

15 Condolences

  1. Connie and Tim Rock on February 22, 2012 at 4:38 pm

    Bertie, We have such wonderful memories of you that we will keep in our hearts forever.
    Love and Prayers to all your family who loved you dearly.
    Connie and Tim Rock

  2. Ashley Turman on February 23, 2012 at 7:29 am

    Bertie was an inspiration to us all. What a warm and witty woman. She will be missed.

  3. John Spain on February 23, 2012 at 9:06 am

    Judy and Mike – Sorry to learn of Bertie’s passing, but glad to hear that peace and her reward have come. Bless you all. John & Lori

  4. Tracy Twedell on February 23, 2012 at 11:08 am

    Bertie’s family – even though I never met her, she was my Zeta sister. May God comfort you during this time. After my grandmother died someone sent me this quote and I truly believe it. Zeta love!

    Perhaps they are not the stars, but rather openings in Heaven where the love of our lost ones pours through and shines down upon us to let us know they are happy. ~Author Unknown

  5. Dennis Moss on February 23, 2012 at 9:54 pm

    Chip–Sorry to hear about the passing of your mother. I did see that you and Connie have wed since I retired. Wanted to make visitation on Sunday but can’t as we will be out of town.

  6. Carol Dema on February 24, 2012 at 9:34 am

    Judy and Chip, Bertie meant so much to me and my family. I have so many childhood memories that revolve around her and your family, our backdoor neighbors. She will be missed by everyone who knew her, but I am comforted by the thought that she has rejoined her loved ones in heaven. I hope that she and Betty can reconnect and are together again …BFF! Carol Chaney Dema

  7. Kandi (Kerr) and Scott Schaake on February 24, 2012 at 1:33 pm

    Your family is in our thoughts
    and prayers. We will never forget Bertie, she was such a kind person and will truely be missed!. We will definitely miss her yearly Christmas cards……we looked forward to them each year.

  8. Patti Bowlin on February 26, 2012 at 12:21 pm

    Bertie’s name rang a loud bell when I saw her name in the Lawrence Journal World. My mother (Dora Lee Bowlin) considered her one of her dearest friends. Mom passed away in 1991, but I know she would want her sincerest condolences passed along to Bertie’s family. They were friends in Beta Sigma Phi and also through the decopauge classes that my mother loved so much.
    Patti Bowlin

  9. Carolyn Gleason on February 26, 2012 at 1:33 pm

    Deepest condolences. Bertie was a dear neighbor here at Brandon Woods.

  10. Carrie Hildenbrand on February 26, 2012 at 5:51 pm

    Bertie & I were members of the same P.E.O. chapter (IK). I don’t recall knowing her middle name was Grace. As my daughter’s first name is Grace, I am quite fond of Bertie’s middle name. It was always a treat to have a meeting at Bertie’s house before she moved. When I used to live on Learnard Street, sometimes I would pick Lorraine Hammer & Bertie up to go to the meetings together. She was a lovely lady & I’m glad I got to know her.

  11. Rebecca Gant on February 27, 2012 at 1:51 pm

    I am so sorry to hear of Bertie’s passing. I knew her years ago in PEO and always enjoyed being with her. I’m holding you all in my thoughts.

  12. Judy Underwood Bauer and Gene Bauer on February 27, 2012 at 8:56 pm

    Please accept our deepest sympathy on the death of your mother, Judy, and extend our sentiments to all of your family. Your mother was one of the sweetest, kindest individuals, and excelled in the art of party-planning and putting others at ease. I am honored to have known her and am sorry that we are unable to attend her service. We will hold you all in our thoughts and prayers.
    Judy (and Gene) Bauer

  13. Aymie Clayton on February 29, 2012 at 12:55 pm

    Please accept my condolences as Bertie’s Zeta sister from the Chicago area. She has been an inspiration to me and many of our fellow sisters in such a short amount of time. God Bless all of your family during this difficult time. Zeta Love to all…Mrs. Aymie Clayton of Lombard, IL.

  14. Lisa W Brock on March 1, 2012 at 3:42 pm

    I am a ZTA sister from Florida. I was so sad to learn of Miss Bertie’s passing and am so thankful that she was initiated into our sisterhood. I am just sorry that we didn’t have more time with her as a sister.
    May peace be with you all at this difficult time, and may your sweet memories of Bertie comfort you. Lisa

  15. Jane Bateman on March 5, 2012 at 4:22 pm

    Judy, I am sorry to see that your mother passed away. I think it is especially hard to say goodbye to our mothers. She will be remembered and not forgotten by her family and friends. I always enjoyed visiting with her. She was such a great lady. All my best. Jane

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