Lyle Meredith died peacefully at his home with his family around him on February 27, 2015. Lyle was born November 29, 1926 to Grace and Howard Meredith. He was the oldest of four children. He is survived by his wife of 62 years, Patricia SymesMeredith. They had four children; Bradford (and wife Debra) of Stilwell, Kansas; Michael, Douglas, and Jason all of Dodge City. In addition he is survived by his sisters Eleanora Wilson of Plainville; Eva Mae Prattof Jefferson City, Missouri; and brother DonaldMeredith of Webb City, Missouri. There are four grandchildren, Logan Meredith, Amarillo, Texas; Audra Birchfield (and husband Josh), Amarillo, Texas; Mitch and Monte Meredith, Gulfport, Fl.; great-grandsons Colby Smith, Gulfport, Fl.; Vincent Birchfield, Amarillo, Texas; and a great grand-daughter who arrives in April, Aleia Birchfield.
Lyle joined the Navy before finishing his senior year in high school. After serving his tour of duty in the Navy he returned to finish high school (with his sister Eleanora). From there he attended Kansas State Teachers College (now Emporia State University) where he received his Bachelor of Music Education. Lyle began his teaching career in Lincolnville, Kansas. What followed was a career in public education in Kansas which took him from Lincolnville to Wilson to Bushton to Nickerson to Plainville and finally to Dodge City. During that time he taught band, choir, senior English, and Debate. His choirs gathered Superior honors at the KSHSAA State level for 20 consecutive years along with solos and ensembles too numerous to count. Lyle was a member of the professional Barbershop Quartet “The Travelaires”. Barbershop was his second love as he directed Barbershop Choruses in both Hays and Dodge City and was the director of the Sweet Adelines of Dodge City. Lyle was also an advocate for music in the state of Kansas where he served two different two-year terms as the President of KMEA (the Kansas Music Educators Association). In his later years he was a judge, clinician and adjunct vocal instructor at St. Mary of the Plains College and Dodge City Community College. For 31 years Lyle was the director of the Presbyterian Church Choir where he served his community faithfully. Lyle retired in 1987 from public education in the Dodge City School system where he was the high school/jr.high vocal music teacher for 17 years. Upon retirement however, things did not slow down. For several years after retiring from public education Lyle was the voice of the Dodge City Cowboy Band, a DJfor Kansas Public Radio playing classical music and jazz. He also gave private lessons in his home to students from all over the Southwest Kansas area and worked part-time in the jewelry department at JCPenney’s. Besides his music Lyle’s hobbies included sailing, fishing, camping, golfing, woodworking (he built a bedroom suite for both Audra and Logan) and storytelling. It was once said that the measure of a man is not how much he loves but by how much he is loved. This is evidenced by the number of students pausing to reflect on not only his teaching skills but his ability to inspire and challenge themselves to reach into their hearts and experience the joy of music. No matter the level of expertise or desire, all who entered his classroom were met with expectations, challenges, and a genuine concern for their success as musicians and as people.
Memorial service will be at 2:00 p.m. Wednesday, March 4, 2015, at the First Presbyterian Church Dodge City, with Kevin Salzman presiding. There will be no public viewing, cremation has taken place. Friends may sign the register from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday at Ziegler Funeral Chapel. Burial will follow at the Kansas Veterans Cemetery, Ft. Dodge, Kansas. The family suggests memorials to Hospice of the Prairie, Western Plains Cardiac Rehab Center or The Kansas Veterans Center, Ft. Dodge, Kansas, all in care of Ziegler Funeral Chapel, 1901 N 14th Ave. Dodge City, Kansas 67801.