Norman Radke


NEWTON — Norman Radke, 85, died Friday, March 14, 2014, at Kansas Christian Home in Newton.

NEWTON — Norman Radke, 85, died Friday, March 14, 2014, at Kansas Christian Home in Newton.

He was born June 30, 1928, at Newton to Paul B. and Clara Brack Radke.

He married Donna Lee Turnbull in Council Grove on Aug. 13, 1950. She preceded him in death.

Radke graduated from Hoisington High School in 1946 and from Emporia State University in 1950, with a bachelor's degree in music education. He received his master's degree in music from the University of Colorado in 1963.

He taught two years at Wichita County Community High School in Leoti, three years at Kinsley Public Schools, 12 years at Pratt Public Schools and Pratt Community College, and 14 years at Garden City Community College.

While at Pratt, he served as president of the Pratt City Teachers Association and was named Outstanding Young Teacher. At Garden City, he served as chairman of the Faculty Senate and was named "Who's Who in American Colleges and Universities."

After retiring from GCCC, he joined the Finney County Sheriff's Office, where he served for 10 years as a patrolman, captain and undersheriff for Sheriff Grover Craig.

He was a graduate of the Kansas Law Enforcement Academy, the National Academy of Corrections, Boulder, Colo., and served on the State Department of Corrections Advisory Committee for jail training.

After retirement in 1990, Radke and his wife moved to Lindsborg. He was a lifetime member of the Lutheran Church, and while in Lindsborg belonged to Bethany Lutheran Church. He served on the church council for six years and also served on the Worship and Music Committee, Outreach Committee, Bell Choir, and the Handyman Crew.

Radke was an avid outdoorsman and loved to hunt pheasant, quail and ducks. His hobbies included wood carving, leather making, needle point, and making whirly gigs. He enjoyed reading, and looked forward to spending time with his sons and grandchildren fishing, telling stories of his youth and life experiences, and watching his grandchildren and great-grandchildren in their favorite activities.

Survivors include two brothers, Bill Radke and wife Pat of Hoisington, and Allen Radke of Pinedale, Wyo.; two sons, Dennis Radke and wife Joyce of Hutchinson, and Darrell Radke and wife Karen of Newton; two grandsons, David Radke and wife Laci of Arlington, and Daniel Radke of Hutchinson; two granddaughters, Bethany Gormley and husband Lance of Newton, and Sarah Martin and husband Joe of Kansas City, Kan.; eight grandchildren, Hunter Radke, Jake and Ethan Beck, Greg Radke, Tristan and Emily Gormley, and Gabriel and Elaina Martin.

He was preceded in death by his wife; his parents; two brothers, Paul C. (Clinton) and John.

Services are 10:30 a.m. Thursday at Bethany Lutheran Church in Lindsborg, with Pastor Loren Mai officiating. Burial will be at Elmwood Cemetery, Lindsborg.

Visitation will be 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. today, Tuesday and Wednesday at Elliott Mortuary, Hutchinson. Family will receive friends from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Thursday at the church.

Memorials are suggested to Bethany Lutheran Church, Bethany College or the Lindsborg Community Hospital in care of Elliott Mortuary, Hutchinson.

Condolences may be left at

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