Geraldine (Gerry) Irene Whisnant Livers, 91, passed away at Lawrence Memorial Hospital on December 18, 2017. She was born April 19, 1926 in Portis, Kansas, daughter of Carrol James and Alda Conrow Whisnant. She attended schools in Fostoria, St. George, and Emmet, Kansas, graduating from Emmet High School in 1943. She attended Kansas State University for 2 years, and then married Ronald Wilson Livers in November of 1946. Over the years, Gerry and Ron lived in Manhattan, Kansas; Minneapolis, Minnesota; Clovis, New Mexico; and on the Fort Hays Experiment Station at Hays, Kansas until he passed away in November of 1979. Gerry continued to live and work in Hays and in 1989 married John Launchbaugh (deceased). In May of 1997 she moved to Lawrence, KS and in July of 1999 she moved into the Presbyterian Manor in Lawrence, where she lived until her death.
In addition to being a mother and homemaker, Gerry taught school in Pottawatomie County, KS in 1943-44. She worked at the Sunflower Ordinance Plant in DeSoto during World War II, and from 1959 until 1989 worked in various secretarial positions at the Plains Agricultural Sub-Station in Clovis, the First Presbyterian Church in Hays, and at the Fort Hays Experiment Station, KSU. In 1989 she was a finalist for the Kansas State University “Classified Employee of the Year” Award. She was an Elder in the First Presbyterian Church in Hays, and also was a member of the First Presbyterian Church in Lawrence from 1998 on. Gerry kept up with technology, actively emailing friends and relatives on a daily basis. She also pursued many other interests in her long life, including genealogy, sewing/needlecraft, and travel. She was an active member and one-time regent of the Betty Washington Chapter of DAR in Lawrence and served on many resident committees at the Presbyterian Manor.
Gerry was a sister to Carrol James Whisnant, Jr. (Jim) of Liberty Missouri, and a loving mother of four children: Susan Carol Fitts (spouse, Robert Fitts) of Pleasant Grove Utah, Barbara Louise Erin of Bonner Springs, KS, Martha Gail Barnhill (spouse, Curtis Barnhill) of Lawrence, KS, and Curtis Alan Livers (spouse, Molly Livers) of Bonner Springs, KS. She also loved and was loved by seven grandchildren: Scott Garvin, Wendy Garvin, Jessica Briggs, James Erin, Jennifer Lucas, David Barnhill, and Jaci Livers, plus 5 great-grandchildren: Kaeli Thomas, Nathan Erin, Micah Erin, Kaitlin Erin, and Liberty Lucas. Gerry inspired her children and grandchildren with her strength in the face of adversity, her sense of duty and character, her respect for the truth, and her dry sense of humor. She will be missed by her many friends and relatives.
A memorial service and inurnment will be held in the spring at a date and place to be announced. Memorials are suggested to the National Osteoporosis Foundation and may be sent in care of Barnett Family Funeral Home, P.O. Box 602, Oskaloosa, KS 66066. www.barnettfamilyfh.com.