Otto Stites, Jr.

Otto Russell “Russ” Stites, Jr.,87, Lawrence, died June 2, 2012 at Pioneer Ridge Rapid Recovery.
He was born on February 17, 1925 in Washington D.C. to Otto Russell and Margaret Ramseyer Stites.  He attended grade school in Emporia, Kansas and graduated in 1942 from College High School, Bartlesville, Oklahoma,  He attended Purdue University and graduated  from Kansas University in 1948 with a Bachelor of Arts degree and in 1951 with a Bachelor of Law degree.

He enlisted in 1943 at age 17 in the United States Marine Corps V-12 Program and spent three years on active duty during World War II, serving in the United States, Pacific Theatre and North China..  He was recalled to active duty in 1951 during the Korean War and retired from the United States Marine Corps Reserve with the rank of Captain.

In 1953, he began the practice of law in Topeka, Kansas, with the firm of Doran, Kline, Cosgrove and Russell.  From 1961 to 1969 he was an Assistant Attorney General for the State of Kansas.  In 1969, he was appointed Regional Counsel for the Post Office Department in Wichita, Kansas and retired from federal service in 1992.

He was a member of Beta Theta Pi fraternity, Phi Delta Phi International Legal fraternity, Kansas Bar Association, University of Kansas Alumni Association, National Association of Retired Federal Employees, American Legion Post 14, Lawrence, Kansas, Fraternal Order of Eagles, Lawrence and Elks Lodge 803, Ottawa, Kansas.

He married Betty Mae Myers in Lawrence, Kansas in 1961. She died March 20, 2004.  He is survived by one son, Todd Russell Stites, Los Angeles, California, one daughter, Robin Lynn Breit and her husband, Chris Breit, Lawrence, Kansas, one brother, John Stites, Manhattan, Kansas, one sister, Jane Leo, Prairie Village, Kansas and several nieces and nephews.

Funeral services will be 11 a.m. Friday, June 8, 2012 at Warren-McElwain Mortuary.   Burial with Military Honors will follow at Oak Hill Cemetery, Lawrence.  Visitation will be 10 a.m. prior to the funeral service at the mortuary.

Memorial contributions may be made in his name to Lawrence Humane Society sent in care of the mortuary.

17 Condolences

  1. Glen and Karen Fritz on June 3, 2012 at 5:53 pm

    Our thought and prayers are with you and your family at this difficult time. Russ was a great guy and we were blessed to know him.

  2. Billy Leo on June 3, 2012 at 6:31 pm

    The passing of uncle Russ is a sad time as we will all dearly miss him. I am amazed at his sense of humor and love of his family that he showed during the last weeks of his life. He couldn’t have been a better example of a true gentleman. He was truly one of the pillars of our family. He is in god’s graces with Betty, DJ, BP and Dorie. All our love to Robin, Chris and Todd. Rock Chalk Jayhawk Russ!

  3. Connie Collins on June 3, 2012 at 8:06 pm

    My thoughts and prayers are with you all. Enjoyed spending my Christmas Dinners and holiday season with him in Texas. He loved the dressing I made, so always sent plenty home with him. Got to play golf with him as well, he so loved the game. He was such a thoughtful gentleman. Will keep the memories of him close to my heart. He will be missed. My love to you, his family.

  4. Leigh on June 3, 2012 at 9:44 pm

    Robin, Todd & Chris,
    Just got the news and so terribly sad…
    Your dad was a great guy, and a fun uncle I’m going to miss greatly.
    Wish I could be with you now, but please know you are in my thoughts and prayers.
    Love you,

  5. Lexie Engleman on June 4, 2012 at 6:36 am

    Robin, Chris and Todd I am so sorry to hear of your Dad’s passing. He was a great man and a good father and husband. I know you will miss him dearly. My thoughts and prayers are with you in this time of sadness.

  6. Don & Ruth Morrison on June 4, 2012 at 8:48 am

    Robin, we are very sorry to hear of the loss of your Dad Russ & are thinking of you & Chris at this sad time. His smiling face & sense of humour will be missed at LIV this winter. Sincere condolences to you & your family.

  7. Cyrilla Loria on June 4, 2012 at 11:24 am

    To the family of Russ. You do not know me but Russ and I have frequent talks at the Johnny’s on Wakarusa. He is related to my cousin Ralph Stites in Mound City, Ks. He was a very nice man and I really enjoyed hiws company. Cyrilla Loria

  8. Nancy & Rick Renfro on June 5, 2012 at 7:47 am

    Dear Robin and Chris,

    We are sorry to hear that you lost your dad. He was no doubt very proud of you. Here’s to the good times you shared.

    ~Nancy & Rick

  9. Diana Breit Wolfe on June 5, 2012 at 9:33 pm

    Robin amd Chris – I’m so sorry to hear of the death of your dad. We’re never ready to let go of a parent. My thoughts and prayers go out to you. God bless you at this very sad time.

  10. Ione Holeman on June 6, 2012 at 9:00 am

    Russ and Betty were wonderful neighbors in Texas and great friends on the golf course. Robin and Chris, my love and prayers are with you and your LIV friends look forward to seeing you this winter.

  11. Judy Green on June 6, 2012 at 2:02 pm

    Robin&Chris–Sorry to hear of your dad’s passing. I know that you were very close to your parents and will miss them. Our condolences–Judy & Conrad

  12. Carol Van Leer on June 6, 2012 at 3:54 pm

    Dearest Todd,
    So sorry to hear of your dad’s passing. That we may know it’s coming does not make it any easier. Please let me know if there is anything you need. Loads of love, Carol

  13. Scott Ackerman on June 7, 2012 at 11:45 am

    Dear Todd, I am keeping you in my thoughts daily. I know how difficult it is to loose our parents and how much you will miss your Dad. You were a wonderful and devoted son. Sending Lots of Love your way.

  14. John Dixon on June 7, 2012 at 3:14 pm

    As a friend of Todd’s, I send my sincere regrets for your family’s loss.

  15. Patricia King on June 13, 2012 at 5:30 am

    Robin, we were blessed to have known both your parents at LIV. They were very dear people. We are so sorry for your loss. You’re in our thoughts and prayers.

  16. Pat & Lana Hunter on June 30, 2012 at 3:59 pm

    We are sorry for the loss of Russ. He was a very nice man .We know him from LIV and Pat played in the Tuesday golf league with Russ.

    Prayers go out to your family.

  17. Dick Williams on July 12, 2012 at 10:45 am

    Although I never had the privilege of meeting Russ it goes without saying that we are all in debt to him for his service to this great nation and I, for one, am extremely grateful. Plus he raised one helluva daughter by the name of Robin.

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