George D. Harshberger Jr., 77, died Friday, October 9, 2015 at Western Plains Medical Complex.
He was born April 22, 1938 at Dodge City, Kansas, the son of George D. Sr. and Beulah (Schoonover) Harshberger. He was raised on the family farm in southern Ford County. The Harshberger farm was established by George’s grandfather, Jacob Harshberger in 1884 as a result of Osage Indian Trust Lands being plotted for private ownership. George was a lifetime resident of Minneola.
On June 9, 1960 he married Judith DeShon at Dodge City, Kansas. She survives.
He enjoyed skiing, snowmobiling, traveling and working on the farm. George also loved watching his grandkids play sports, going fishing with kids and grandkids, and was a very loving and attentive grandfather.
George graduated from Minneola public schools in May of 1956. He then committed to Dodge City Jr. College on an athletic scholarship where he lettered in both basketball and football. He graduated with honors from DCJC in May of 1958 and accepted a football scholarship to attend Wichita State University. George was named to the All-Conference Football team for the 1959 season and was drafted by the Pittsburg Steelers and Denver Broncos. Upon graduating with honors in May of 1960, with a degree in Mathematics, George opted to accept a two year teaching fellowship in Physics at WSU. After completing his fellowship and earning a Masters Degree in Physics, he accepted a contract from Dodge City Jr. College beginning August of 1962. George’s teaching contract included head golf coach, assistant football coach, and Math-Science instructor. George was employed by DCCC for 12 years when he then had to make a career choice between teaching or full time farming. At that time, center pivot irrigation was changing the local farming landscape, and George decided to retire from teaching and devote full time to the family farm. His time at DCCC was a very rewarding part of his life, particularly the role he played in developing a part of the new campus as head of the Math-Science department. George served on numerous boards at the local, regional and state level.
Other survivors include: 4 children, Andrea Castaldo and husband Fran, Kingston, New York, Greg Harshberger and wife Madeline, Peoria, Illinois, Gary Harshberger and wife Melanie, Dodge City, Kansas, Susan Dunn and husband Robert, Buena Vista, Colorado; 2 sisters, Norma Leis, Columbia, Missouri and Ida Heinson and husband Wade, Lamar, Colorado; 7 Grandchildren, Matthew Harshberger, Elizabeth Harshberger, Sam Harshberger, Jacob Harshberger, Jessie Harshberger, Joshua Harshberger and Elena Dunn.
George was preceded in death by his parents, brother Gary Harshberger, and sister Emma Gleichman.
Memorial Mass will be 10:00 am Wednesday October, 14, 2015 at Sacred Heart Cathedral, Dodge City, with Fr. Aneesh Parappanattu presiding. Rosary will be at 7:00 pm Tuesday at Sacred Heart Cathedral. There will be a book signing from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm at Ziegler Funeral Chapel. There will be no public visitation, cremation has taken place. Internment will be held at 2:00 pm Wednesday at the Minneola Cemetery, Minneola, Kansas.
The family suggests memorials to the Alzheimer’s Association in care of Ziegler Funeral Chapel, 1901 N. 14th Ave., Dodge City, Kansas 67801.