William Michael Kline

William Michael Kline died Friday, September 1, 2023, at his home. He was born July 4, 1947, in Hutchinson, Kansas to William L. and Dorothy Shields Kline. He was a graduate of Hutchinson High School and the University of Kansas.  He was vice president of Kline Insurance in Hutchinson. During that time, he was active in state and national agents associations. He later worked for the Independent Insurance Agents of America. For the last twenty years he worked for Med James, Inc. in Overland Park as a senior marketing representative. He was a member of Phi Kappa Psi fraternity.

Mike is survived by his wife, Betty of the home; daughter Alden Watts and her husband, Rob of Honolulu, Hawaii; son Andrew Kline and his wife, Kathryn Young of Blanchard, Oklahoma;  grandsons Chip Watts and Pete Watts; sisters-in-law Pam Kline of Hutchinson, Anne Bland of Rogers, Arkansas, Connie Slocomb of Livingston, Texas; and brother-in-law, Tom Tucker of Combs, Arkansas. He was preceded in death by his brother, Stephen Kline.

A celebration of Mike’s life will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday, October 14, 2023, at 1826 East 1150 Road, Lawrence, KS. It will be held outdoors.

The family suggests memorials to Hutchinson Community College Endowment Association and may be sent in care of Warren-McElwain Mortuary, 120 W. 13th St., Lawrence, KS. 66044

12 Condolences

  1. Thomas V. Murray on September 5, 2023 at 9:22 am

    Mike and I were pledge brothers together in the Phi Psi House and made it through four years of college together in the late ’60s. Mike was one of a significant group of outstanding men from Hutchinson who were Phi Psis during that time, and he was one of the best. He was mature and fair in everything he did. I will always have the fondest memories of him. May he rest in peace.

  2. John Reed on September 6, 2023 at 6:19 pm

    Thank you, Tom Murray, for your kind words about Mike Kline. Being another Hutchinson, KS product, I knew Mike and his cousin Rob, as well as their fathers, all Phi Kappa Psi brothers. Mike also marched with the Sky Ryders Drum Corps as did I. Always with an engaging smile and curly hair, Mike engaged others in an open and fair way. Although I had not seen Mike in many years, I remember him vividly, and always will! Mike will be missed!!!

  3. Jane Frost Horn on September 7, 2023 at 8:49 am

    I have known Mike since preschool. Followed him through the Sky Ryders and Hutch High. Followed him to KU and spent lots of time at the Phi Psi house as there’s lots of Phi Psi in my blood. Through all those years Mike is one of the kindest people I have met. He leaves a big hole in my heart. Peace, Mike!

  4. Star Carter on September 7, 2023 at 6:28 pm

    I was just thinking of you two recently when I was in Estes Park. My condolences. I enjoyed meeting you both.
    Star Carter

  5. Jim Davis on September 8, 2023 at 4:05 pm

    Mike Kline was an outstanding product of Hutchinson, KS – his home town. Smart, fun-loving with an infectious laugh, generous, and a friend to all. He made a difference to those who knew him. Our parents were close friends before we were even born. Mike and I grew up together, went to Hutch schools though high school and went on to the University of Kansas in 1965. After college when Mike and Betty still lived in Hutchinson, I had the pleasure of babysitting for Alden once when they couldn’t find a sitter. We laughed about that “job” many years later. In recent years, Mike became active on the selection committee for the HHS Class of 1965 Endowed Scholarship Fund at Hutchinson Community College. His insight and involvement helped our Scholarship Fund achieve important goals which has led to more than 50 Hutch High seniors continuing their education at Hutchinson Community College. As the saying goes, “to know him was to love him”.

  6. Rick Stein on September 11, 2023 at 9:54 am

    I’ve only met Mike for 3 or 4 years ago when we moved into the neighborhood, but formed a lovely bond as we walked our dogs around the block. The more time we spent walking and talking, the more we became friends. The context was limited. The bond was real. Truly sorry our paths had not crossed earlier in life. He was a wonderful, thoughtful, caring person. RIP.

  7. Nancy Hodgson Ruzicka on September 12, 2023 at 7:27 pm

    Farewell and a well-deserved rest to my senior homecoming date and good friend. I am thinking of you, Betty, and your family and how much you will miss his gentle spirit. We all have nothing but fond memories.

  8. Jaye Ediger on September 13, 2023 at 5:41 pm

    Betty, you and your family are in my thoughts & prayers. I enjoyed every second of those “coffee” meetings at the Eldridge Hotel. His kindness and genuine interest in those around him will always be with me.

  9. Bob Eckhoff on September 15, 2023 at 3:36 pm

    Mike ‘Miguel” was my best friend from 2nd grade to this day. He lived on the next street over from us and there was a path worn into the lawn of the neighbors between our house and theirs. Worn not only by us but our dogs Rusty and his Elvis. We grew up together throughout our school days in Hutch and were always best buds for life, through the Sky Ryder days, and even while he was a KU. We lived across the parking lot from each other in Lawrence and I would corrupt him from his study’s and drag him to the “Wheel” for a few beers.
    Mike waged his battle with cancer with dignity and determination. I’m proud to have known him for 70 years. His passing fills me with sadness but also with joy for all the times we shared together. Loved that guy, Eck.

  10. Julie Kline Bellah on October 1, 2023 at 7:54 pm

    My sincere condolences to you and your family. I know Mike fought a long, courageous battle with cancer, and may all of you find heaven sent comfort and peace that surpasses understanding at this time.
    I have so many happy memories of our families! Mike will be missed!

  11. Charles D Lee on October 2, 2023 at 3:03 pm

    My memories with Mike, especially from our time in Hutchinson, are appreciated times I will forever remember fondly. Sunday mornings when we ushered together at the First Presbyterian Church never felt like mere obligations; they were always opportunities to catch up filled with fun and laughter.
    Mike’s pride in being a Kansas Jayhawk was evident to all who knew him, yet he also held a light-hearted ecumenical spirit, as captured by his unique license plate “Jayhog”. It was a playful nod not just to his beloved team but also to Betty’s Arkansas Razorback heritage. Mike had a gift of weaving together two worlds, and he did so with a chuckle and a smile.
    Our paths took us to different parts of Kansas, him to Lawrence and me to Overland Park. Though our meetups became less frequent, our occasional lunches remained as vibrant as ever, brimming with laughter, stories, and warm reminiscing.
    Mike and his family were not just residents, but pillars of the community. His absence will be deeply felt, but I take solace in the countless memories and the impact he left on so many.
    My sincerest heartfelt condolences to Betty, their family, and everyone whose life was touched by Mike. May he rest in peace, surrounded by the grace and love that he so freely gave to us all.

  12. Margie Coggins on October 4, 2023 at 11:11 am

    I felt as though I knew Mike slightly through my long friendship with Betty, but when I moved into the neighborhood we became friends on our own when our dogs, Captain and Gus, introduced us. I will miss our many conversations and friendly encounters and will never forget his consistent help when I broke first my arm and then my foot! Mike left the world a better place and he will be missed.

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