Nancy Lessig

Memorial services for Nancy Cline Lessig, 74, Lawrence, KS will be held at 4:00 p.m. Thursday, November 16, 2017 at Grace Evangelical Presbyterian Church (3312 Calvin Drive) in Lawrence. The family will greet friends at 3:00 p.m. Burial will be held 10:00 a.m. Friday, November 17, 2017 at Pioneer Cemetery on the KU campus. Nancy passed away Friday, November 10, 2017 at Lawrence Memorial Hospital, suddenly after a brief illness.

Nancy was born July 18,1943 in Wichita, KS to Wilford L. and R. Leona (Cottle) Cline. She graduated from East High (Wichita) in 1961, and attended the University of Kansas, graduating with a BS in Elementary Education in 1965. Nancy was a member of the Delta Gamma sorority and served has house manager. She met Parker Lessig on a blind date (orchestrated by Nancy’s sister Carol and Parker’s brother Paul) as a freshman in 1961. The couple was married in Wichita on August 15, 1965. Nancy began her career as an elementary teacher the same year, and for the next 5 years taught 5th grade at Hillcrest Elementary supporting Parker as he completed his masters and Ph.D. degrees. She earned a Master of Science in Education during this period by taking evening and weekend classes.

Nancy and Parker moved to Pullman, WA in 1970 where she taught 5th grade at Edison Elementary. They returned to Lawrence in 1972, and Nancy began teaching at Sunset Hill until the birth of their sons (Aaron Parker Lessig and Eric Paul Lessig). Nancy chose to be a stay-at-home mom until her children became teenagers. This was a wonderful period in the family’s life. She always filled the home with love, fun, endless adventure, and the aroma of freshly baked “monster” cookies. Neighborhood children knew that they were always welcome and grew to love her as a warm and caring “neighborhood mom.” Twelve years later, she resumed her teaching career at Basehor Elementary; she retired in 2007.

Nancy was a Cub Scout den leader and pack committee member and was a strong supporter of Parker’s work as a Scoutmaster and Scouting commissioner. Nancy had a life-long Christian faith. She taught Sunday school at the First Presbyterian Church (Lawrence) and was a long-term deaconess and member of the Board at the First Christian Church (Lawrence). For the past 20 years, she was a member of Grace Evangelical Presbyterian Church (Lawrence) and was active in its women’s Bible studies. She was a member of the Kansas University Women’s Club and participated in the New Members and Friends Group, the Kansas History Group and the Travel Group. Nancy especially enjoyed the Dole Institute of Politics and seldom missed a workshop or lecture.

Nancy was a selfless and caring individual. She always tried to follow God’s example and never placed her interests or wants above those of others. Her focus was on God, her family, students, friends and acquaintances. She offered support when support was needed and loving direction and constructive correction when required – always with loving compassion. Aaron summed this well by saying that “She loved people in the way they needed to be loved.”

Nancy was preceded in death by her parents and niece, Gail Suzanne Lessig. Survivors include her husband of 52 years, V. Parker Lessig; two sons, Aaron Parker Lessig (Jessica) of Evergreen, CO and Eric Paul Lessig (Heather) of Lawrence; five grandchildren, Josephine, Cline, Caleb, Kaitlyn, and Grace; two sisters, Beth Gramly (Roger) of Overland Park and Carol Hermes (Hank) of Boulder, CO; a brother-in-law, Paul M. Lessig (Lindsay) of Seattle, and a number of nephews and nieces.

Nancy will be deeply missed, but she leaves a lasting legacy of faith, hope and love.

In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be made in her name to the Dole Institute of Politics, to the children’s programs at Grace Evangelical Presbyterian Church, or to the Boy Scouts of America Heart of America Council.

22 Condolences

  1. Joe & Donna Ketchum on November 12, 2017 at 9:47 am

    Parker we just heard about Nancy’s passing are are shocked & heartbroken for you & your family. Joe & I will keep you all in our prayers now & in the weeks ahead as you work through this huge loss.

  2. Jim Haack on November 12, 2017 at 10:10 am

    So sorry to hear about your loss. I remember Mrs. Lessing as a super-nice lady and one of my favorite teachers. (5th grade, Sunset Hill, ’72-73)

  3. Cathy Shenoy on November 12, 2017 at 3:46 pm

    Parker – I’m so sorry to hear of Nancy’s passing. She will leave a big hole in your heart, but wonderful memories. She was truly a kind, caring person. You and the boys are in my thoughts and prayers during this trying time.

  4. Mary Hatfield on November 12, 2017 at 7:42 pm

    It is with deep sadness to read about Nancy’s passing. Her deep faith in God’s plan for her life assures us that she is living with Him in peace and love. Carol, Nancy, and I shared the bonds of sisterhood in Delta Gamma along with the bonds of Christian fellowship. May God’s loving comfort and peace abide in your hearts.

  5. Vickie McEnroe on November 12, 2017 at 9:48 pm

    I am so sorry to hear of Nancy’s sudden passing. I was just thinking of her the other day and wondered how she was doing. We had a special team at Linwood Elementary. She added her character to the group with her fun sense of humor,dedication, and support for us all. I am so glad that Nancy was able to retire when she did so she could have the freedom of time that she deserved. She so loved her family. Her school family definitely feels her loss. But, we all need the reminder that it is her spirit that should bring a smile to our hearts. I am so sorry that I will be out of town at the time of services but please know my thoughts and prayers are with you.

  6. Brenda Meyers - Quail Run 5th grade teacher on November 13, 2017 at 12:25 pm

    I was deeply saddened to hear of Nancy’s passing. She was a wonderful, vibrant and caring person. My heart goes out to Cline, Kaitlyn, Heather and Eric. Many thoughts and prayers are with all of you.

  7. Mary Pat McQueeney on November 13, 2017 at 2:08 pm

    Parker and Eric–
    I came to know Nancy through the Dole Institute. She was such an optimistic, pleasant force there–no matter the topic we were discussing. I always waited for her queries to presenters because she had the ability to pretend she was asking a simple, unassuming question while, in reality, she was zeroing in on the core of the session. Presenters always were drawn off by her kind, unassuming tone and were tripped into responding to key issues they had sought to avoid. That strategy required an extra set of “smarts.” I’ll miss that inquiring mind–and the twinkle of her eye and smile that followed.

  8. Dian Upton Quatrochi on November 13, 2017 at 3:45 pm

    Sending condolence to Nancy’s family, especially Carol and Parker.
    I have know Nancy off and on my entire life.
    As a childhood playmate, who lived down the street from my Grandparents in Wichita. Then as a Delta Gamma sorority sister; lastly picking up our friendship at a 50th KU Reunion.
    Nancy was especially welcoming, genuine, graceful and kind.
    Dian Upton Qatrochi

  9. Karen Heeb on November 13, 2017 at 5:23 pm

    Sending thoughts and prayers, Eric, Aaron, and Parker. I was stunned to learn of Nancy’s passing. I Just visited with her a few weeks ago at an Osher Class. I enjoyed catching up on your family activities, especially Eric, as it’s been a few years since I had the privilege of having you in my third grade class. Prayers will continue for you as you adjust to life without Nancy’s physical presence but knowing she prepared for eternity with her faith in God.
    Karen Heeb

  10. Leslie Stallard on November 13, 2017 at 9:06 pm

    I was so sad to hear about Nancy’s unexpected passing. My thoughts, prayers and love are with you Parker, Eric, Heather, Cline and Kaitlyn. She was a devoted wife, mother and grandmother and she faithfully served our community, church, and school so very well. I’m sure that you will miss her dearly.

  11. Larry and Shelly Thornton on November 14, 2017 at 6:12 am

    We are so sorry to hear of Nancy’s passing. Prayers of peace and comfort for the family.

  12. Suzanne Sherr on November 14, 2017 at 2:40 pm

    Dear Parker, Aaron, and Eric,
    I am so sorry to read this obituary. My heart goes out to you. She was such a kind, caring person. A lot of people benefited from knowing her.
    In my own life I take comfort in how long I did have with my loved one. Please accept my heartfelt condolences.
    Suzanne Sherr

  13. Michele Bach on November 14, 2017 at 5:06 pm

    I am so sad to hear of Nancy’s passing. My thoughts and prayers are with you,Eric, and Aaron.
    Michele Bach

  14. Dana Price on November 14, 2017 at 11:02 pm

    Aaron, Jessica, Josie, Caleb, Grace & the Lessig Family ~

    So very sorry to hear of your Mother’s/Grandmother’s passing. Please know you are in our hearts and prayers.

    Warmest Regards,
    The Price Family

  15. Sherry Borgers on November 15, 2017 at 8:11 am

    Parker, Aaron, and Eric,

    Wayne and I are so very sorry to hear of Nancy’s death. She was a caring, energetic person and so nice to our family. Joyce, Carolyn, Nancy and I had lots of fun
    times playing Bridge over the years; it was always a good time and lots of talk
    and a bit of Bridge! I know she will be missed by many. She was so helpful to
    Ben and the other scouts and to us mothers.
    May God be with you in this time, Sherry, Wayne & Ben Borgers

  16. Laura Gramly on November 16, 2017 at 12:23 am

    I am so sad that my Aunt Nancy has passed away. I feel deeply for my Uncle Parker and Cousins Aaron and Eric for their loss.

    I had been thinking about Aunt Nancy a lot during the past couple of months because it had just hit me how much my 4 year old daughter Layla reminds me of her.

    After repeatedly noticing similarities lately I reflected on who my Aunt Nancy was and felt so happy to think that Layla may turn out like her.

    Layla is a nurturer and she has a passion for babies (dolls and those who are alive) that goes way beyond most kids her age—even beyond the girls who also love babies. She has said she would like to be a teacher when she grows up, just as Nancy was one.

    There is also a certain tone in Layla’s voice and a warmth and sweetness to her demeanor combined with a clever twinkle in her eye that reminds me of Nancy. Layla is a girl who loves people and I think the same was true of Nancy.

  17. Judy Webber Hathaway on November 16, 2017 at 1:42 pm

    Parker, Carol, Eric, & Aaron,

    Larry and I were shocked and saddened to learn of Nancy’s sudden passing. Nancy was always a positive, kind, gentle, and loving person. I feel fortunate to have known her as a friend and sister in the DG house and later as a neighbor. Loving thoughts go out to all of you at this time of loss.

  18. Marilyn Anderson on November 17, 2017 at 2:44 pm

    I knew Nancy through membership in the Alpha Delta Kappa educators’ organization. She was a kind and smiling presence at our gatherings. My condolences to you for your loss.

  19. Marilyn McGown on November 17, 2017 at 7:55 pm

    I loved working with Nancy at Linwood Elementary. She had a gift for teaching and helping children. She brought joy to many of us.

  20. Rhetta Jo Noever on November 18, 2017 at 10:50 am

    Parker, I was sadden to hear about Nancy’s passing. What a shock. I am so sorry for you and your family. Nancy was such a warm person with a big smile. You will miss her so much. My thoughts are with you at this difficult time.

  21. Dennis Brain on November 19, 2017 at 7:55 pm

    I was in Mrs. Lessig’s fifth grade class at Hillcrest School in Lawrence in 1966-67, which was the second year of her teaching career. She was one of my best and favorite teachers in my years as a student in the Lawrence school district. Mrs. Lessig reminded me at the time of Shirley Jones, the librarian in the film version of The Music Man in 1962. Several of my classmates from 1966-67 also recall her fondly.

    When Mrs. Lessig returned to Lawrence from Washington state, she and my late mother, Alouise R. Brain, both taught at Sunset School in Lawrence for a few years until Mrs. Lessig took a hiatus to raise her children. (My mother taught 3rd and 4th grade there from 1969-1884.) I think I may have met her once again at Sunset Hill in 1973 or 1974 when picking my mother up from school.

    I wish to extend my condolences to her husband Parker and to the rest of her family.

  22. Phil Gaus on December 18, 2017 at 9:52 pm

    Parker, Eric and Aaron
    So sorry to hear of Nancy’s passing. Gail, all my boys and myself pray for you, Eric and Aaron. Hope you are doing as well as possible especially during the holidays. God Bless you all.

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