Robert Fluker, Sr., 97, died Tuesday morning, June 28th in Lawrence. He was born May 7, 1919 in Kansas City, Kansas. After graduating from high school in Clay Center, Kansas, he received a B.S. in Business Administration from the University of Kansas (1942), where he was a football player and a Summerfield Scholar; an M.A. in Economics from Princeton University (1943); and attended the Russian Institute at Columbia University (1948-49).
From 1943 to 1948, he was a teacher and Advisor to the Afghan Ministry of Education and to the Afghan Minister of Finance and National Economy in Kabul, Afghanistan. He also acted as advisor-tutor to the then Crown Prince. From 1949-51, he worked at the Library of Congress, specializing in Eastern European affairs. From 1951, he served with the U.S. Department of State in a number of positions both in Washington, DC, and in South and Southeast Asia, retiring in 1974 as Consul General in Melbourne, Australia.
Following retirement, he returned to Lawrence, Kansas, where he remained the rest of his life. In addition to working as an international and domestic consultant to U.S. companies, he was active in community activities, including as a board member for Kansans for Improvement of Nursing Homes (1998-2001) and as a member of the League of Women Voters, for which he established the Helen N. Fluker Award for Open and Accessible Government in memory of his late wife. He served as Advisory Council member to the St. Lawrence Catholic Campus Center for many years, and was an active member of St. John’s parish church and school from 2005 until his passing, providing scholarships for students and supporting the growth of the parish in many ways. He delivered Meals on Wheels to seniors, and also served on the board of the Serendipity Foundation’s Oral Health Training Program, working to improve oral care for residents of long-term care facilities.
He married Helen Naramore Fluker in 1943. She preceded him in death in 1998, as did his brother, James S. Fluker. He is survived by his four children: Jameela (Len) Lanza of Roseburg, Oregon, John R. Fluker, Jr. of Lawrence; James Fluker (Tanya Pyak) of Brussels, Belgium; and Julia Fluker (Keith Kutch) of Lebanon, Oregon; by three grandchildren, Anne, Kit and Mary Fluker; by nephew Jacques Fluker and his wife Jarene of Valley Center, Kansas; and by nieces Martha Johnston and Ann Heubner of Cleveland, Ohio.
Friends are invited to a rosary at 6 p.m. followed by a visitation until 8 p.m. at Warren-McElwain Mortuary in Lawrence on Friday, July 1, 2016 and a Mass of Christian Burial at St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church at 9:00 a.m. Saturday, July 2, 2016. Burial will follow at Mt. Calvary Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests contributions be made to Kansas Advocates for Better Care and may be sent in care of Warren-McElwain Mortuary.