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Thomas L. Toepfer

Published on -5/2/2012, 10:05 AM

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The Honorable Thomas L. Toepfer, 61, died Monday, April 30, 2012, at his home.

He was born Oct. 4, 1950, in Hays to Anthony Lyle and Mary Alice (Clark) Toepfer. He was a 1968 graduate of Hays High School, a 1972 graduate of Fort Hays State University with a degree in economics and a 1975 graduate of Washburn University Law School. While at Washburn, he was director of the Neighborhood Youth Corps program and assistant to the director of federal programs for Topeka public schools.

He married Mary Glassman on Nov. 24, 2000, in Hays. He was a district judge in the 23rd Judicial District for nearly 12 years until his retirement in March. Prior to his election to the bench, he was in private practice for 24 years. He was the city prosecutor of Hays for 23 years. He was self-employed as a paperboy in his youth.

He was a member and chairman of the Board of Trustees of St. Anthony Hospital, a founding member and chairman of the board of directors at Hays Medical Center, and recently was asked to be director emeritus at HaysMed. He served as a member and president of Hays USD 489 Board of Education, president and member of St. Nicholas of Myra Catholic Church Parish Council, and member of the building committee for Comeau Catholic Campus Center. He was editorial page editor of the FHSU Leader and member of Sigma Chi fraternity. He was a member of the Ellis County and Kansas State Bar Associations, a former member of Cancer Council of Ellis County, and Executive Committee of the Kansas District Judges' Association. He sat on the commission on judicial qualifications of the state of Kansas.

He enjoyed spending time with his family, reading, writing and golfing.

Survivors include his wife; three sons, Russell and wife, Kitty, Olathe, Matthew Glassman and wife, Haylee, Boston, and Anthony Glassman and girlfriend, Lexi Copeland, Hays; a daughter, Andrea Paul and husband, Landon, Hays; five brothers, Bill and Mary, Shawnee, Phil and Laurie, Hays, Father John Toepfer, Colorado Springs, Colo., Mark and Sandy, Columbia, Ill., and Patrick and Stacy, Hays; four grandchildren, Emma, Luke and Jack Toepfer, all of Olathe, and Isabelle Glassman, Boston; his parents, Hays; and his in-laws, John and Rosie Desmarteau, Hays.

He was preceded in death by a sister, Kathleen Toepfer, in 1979.

Services will be at 10 a.m. Thursday at St. Nicholas of Myra Catholic Church, Hays; burial in St. Joseph Cemetery, Hays.

Visitation will be from 5 to 8 p.m. Wednesday and from 9 to 9:30 a.m. Thursday, both at Hays Memorial Chapel Funeral Home, 1906 Pine.

A vigil service will be at 7 p.m. Wednesday at the funeral home.

Memorials are suggested to Hays Medical Center Foundation or St. Nicholas of Myra Catholic Church in care of the funeral home.

Condolences can be left for the family at www.haysmemorial.com.

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