This Week


Fair Board Brings Back Flea Market, Holds Successful Event

The Hamilton County Fair Board sponsored a new flea market event last Saturday, March 3, at the fairgrounds. While there have been several events like it in the past, up to as much as 35 years ago, there has not been a flea market in the past 15 years. The fair board is using the event for fundraising efforts for the fairgrounds.
According to fairgrounds manager Babette Dixon, they do not know who sponsored the flea market events in the past; but look forward to trying it again to see how much support it would have in the community. If successful, they would consider conducting additional events each year.
“It was definitely successful and exceeded my expectations,” said Hamilton County fair board member Brandon Batchelor. “We did not have an official count, but we had close to 500 people come through from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.”
The event was held in both the fair building and the 4-H building with vendors purchasing table spacing for their wares. Vendors sold items ranging from handmade jewelry, leather products, to more traditional flea market items, such as antiques.
Patrons entering the building were greeted with the smell of frying chicken and other food prepared by MeMe’s Kitchen, who was on hand with the catering.
According to Batchelor, there were people from the surrounding towns, such as Holly, Colo., Lakin, Tribune and Garden City, Kan., who attended the event. He stated with the first event you put it on and then reevaluate the event. The fair board will determine what the next step is, but both Batchelor and Dixon think it was successful enough to continue in the future.

Jacquelyn Marilee (Browning) Schmidt

Jacquelyn Marilee (Browning) Schmidt, passed away at the Hamilton County Hospital in Syracuse, Kan. on Saturday, March 9, 2019, at the age of 85. She was born on Oct. 2, 1933 in Jetmore, Kan., the daughter of Francis “Ike” Browning and Laverna Belle (Swisher) Browning.

Jacquelyn began her life in Jetmore, and at the age of five she moved with her family to a farm southwest of Syracuse. She attended school at the Rising Star Country School from second grade to seventh grade. She then moved again with her family to Holly, Colo., and later moved to Syracuse where she then attended Syracuse High School. She continued her education attending Dodge City Community College for Cosmetology and became a beautician. She returned to Syracuse where she met and married Gano J. Schmidt on June 10, 1952. They made their home in Syracuse and she worked for several places over the next 18 years including the Rialto Café, Uptown Café, School Bus Driver, and Hanks Dairy King. She enjoyed living in Syracuse and resided there until her passing.

Jacquelyn was a member of the Christ’s New Covenant Church and First Presbyterian Church, and a china painting club. She enjoyed china and canvas painting, playing the piano and guitar, crocheting, traveling, dancing, going shopping, and her greatest enjoyment was studying the Bible as well as being with her family and friends.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Ike and Laverna Browning; spouse, Gano Schmidt; and three brothers, Glenn Browning, Gene Browning, and Wendell Browning.

She is survived by three sons, Rick (& wife Kim) Schmidt, Bryan (& wife Mitchelle) Schmidt, and Michael Schmidt, all of Syracuse; one brother, Tom (& wife Shirley) Browning of Sweethome, Ore.; eight grandchildren, Audra (husband Aaron) LeTurgez, Jason, Corey, Austin, Trey, Brayden & Cody Schmidt, and Kayla Taylor; three great grandchildren, Riley & Brentleigh LeTurgez, and Jaelynn Taylor; and many family members and friends whom she loved dearly.

Funeral Services will be held Saturday, March 16, 2019, at 2 p.m. (MDT) at the First Presbyterian Church, in Syracuse. Burial will follow in the Syracuse Cemetery in Syracuse.

Visitation will be held Friday, March 15, 2018, from 1 to 7 p.m. (MDT), at the Fellers Funeral Home LLC, Syracuse. 

Condolences may be sent to In-lieu-of-flowers memorial contributions may be payable to Christ’s New Covenant Church or St. Catherine Hospice, sent in care of Fellers Funeral Home & Monuments LLC, P.O. Box 1253, 401 N. Sumner, Syracuse, KS 67878. 620-384-5100.

John C. Lewis


John C. Lewis, age 92, of Johnson, Kan. died Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019, at Pioneer Manor in Hugoton, Kan.  He was born Sept. 13, 1926, in Byers, Kan., the son of Irvin H. and Effie Mae (Hardin) Lewis.

John came to Johnson, Kan. as a child; moved to Pratt, Kan. and then back to Johnson where he graduated from Johnson High School.  While in high school, John’s basketball team went to State.  After graduation he played town team basketball for a number of years.  He married Anna Mae Edmisson on March 15, 1946, in Syracuse, Kan.  They farmed and raised cattle.  John served on the Johnson Co-op Board, Ground Water Management Board, was an officer of the Kansas Banking Corporation.  John attended First United Methodist Church in Johnson and was a member of the Odd Fellows Lodge. He was a private pilot and enjoyed flying.  After retirement, he started playing golf and spent alot of time at Prairie Pines Golf Course. 

John is survived by his son, Jim Lewis of Winfield, Kan.; daughters, Sue Dowd and Peggy Lewis Stiles both of Johnson; brother, Irvin Harry Lewis, Jr. and wife Nell of Vernall, Utah; four grandchildren, Kate Morrison and husband John, Mollie Seigler and husband Noah, Sarah Anne Stiles, and Emily Lewis; and three great-grandchildren.
John is preceded in death by his parents; wife Anna Mae on Dec. 9, 2012; daughter-in-law, Janie Gibbon Lewis; and sister, Ethel Floyd.

Funeral service was held on Saturday, March 9, 2019, at First United Methodist Church in Johnson, with Reverend Richard Fitzgerald officiating.  Interment followed at the Stanton County Cemetery in Johnson.  Friends called with family present, on Friday, March 8, 2019, at Garnand Funeral Home in Johnson.  Memorial contributions may be given to Prairie Pines Golf Course in care of Garnand Funeral Home, PO Box 715, Johnson, Kansas 67855.  Condolences may be posted at

Patrice L. Vagher


Patrice L. Vagher, 63, died on Friday March 1, 2019 at St. Catherine Hospital in Garden City, Kan.  She was born on May 18, 1955 in Garden City, the daughter of Bob & Patricia (Kunze) Salter.  She married John Vagher on Jan 8, 1977 in Syracuse, Kan.
 Patrice graduated from Syracuse High School in 1973 and attended Garden City Community College.  She then went to Floral School in Denver, Colo.  She moved to Colby and worked as a florist.  In 1981, she and her husband moved to Lakin, Kan. and to Garden City in 1994 where she was the secretary at Modern Radio and TV for five years and then started working as the secretary at Garden City Housing Authority and later became the Director.  She retired after 10 years of service.  She was a member of Cornerstone Church in Garden City and past member of Order of Eastern Star.  She enjoyed sewing, quilting, and crafts such as making Christmas decorations and floral decorations.  She was preceded in death by her brother, Alan Salter; and grandparents, Willis & Ethel Salter and Art & Lula Kunze.
 She is survived by her husband, John Vagher of the home; daughter, Shylah Joann Booker (Shane Hoover) of Syracuse; parents, Bob & Patricia Salter of Syracuse; sister-in-law, Joyce Salter of Spearville, Kan.; and three grandchildren, Kanyon Vagher of Garden City, Alize Vagher and Ki Vagher-Salter both of Syracuse.
 Graveside Service will be at 2 p.m. (CST) Wednesday, Mar. 6, 2019 at Syracuse Cemetery in Syracuse with Pastor Ed Binns officiating.  Memorials are suggested to Cornerstone Celebrate Recovery Program in care of Garnand Funeral Home.  Friends may call from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday, Mar. 5 at Garnand Funeral Home in Garden City.  Condolences may be posted at

Eddie Dwain Ingram


Eddie Dwain Ingram, age 63, unexpectedly passed away on Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019 in Lubbock, Texas.  Eddie was born April 14, 1955 in Tribune, Kan., the son of Dwain M. & Theoma A. ( McDonald ) Ingram. 

A lifetime resident of Greeley County, Kan., he was Regional Supervisor for ARMtech Crop Insurance and a life-long farmer in Greeley County. Eddie was a member of the Kansas Muzzleloaders Assn, N.R.A. and the Smokey Hills Brigade.

Eddie’s surviving family includes two children, Cortlandt Ingram, of Branson, Mo., and Tava & Chris Foster, of Montclair, Va.; his mother, Theoma A. Ingram, of Tribune; Two sisters, Lynnette & Roy Lewis, of Nickerson, Kan., and Lesa & Dale Nolan, of Tribune; three grandchildren, Gunnar Foster, Lincoln Foster & Khyber Foster, of Montclair, Va.; three nephews; one niece; two great nephews; and two great nieces. His father, Dwain Ingram preceded him in death   

A celebration of Eddie’s life will be held at 2 p.m. (MDT) Thursday, March 7, 2019 at the United Methodist Church in Tribune. Burial will be in Greeley County Cemetery in Tribune.

Friends may call from 10 a.m. until 8 p.m., Wednesday, March 6, 2019 at Price & Sons Funeral Home in Tribune.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be sent to Greeley County Museum in care of the funeral home. Condolences may be sent to the family through the funeral home website at

Valera Mae (Graham) Morgan

Valera Mae (Graham) Morgan, 94, passed away peacefully on Feb. 11, 2019, at Wesley Medical Center in Wichita, Kan.
Born to Bruce and Anna Fern Graham, Valera was born in Kendall, Kan. on Sept. 18, 1924. She attended school in Syracuse, Kan., graduating in 1942. 
On Aug. 16, 1942, Valera married Fred E. Morgan.  Together they owned a farm south of Syracuse. Valera worked in O’Brien’s Department Store and furnished pies to local restaurants. She was well known for her wedding cakes, baking well into the 100’s.
In 1968, they sold their farm and purchased the Jayhawker Motel in Great Bend, Kan. They operated the motel until retirement in 1975 at which time they moved to Hutchinson, Kan. Valera continued working as the Banquet Manager for the Holidome for 15 years. He last employment was for the Kansas State Fair as a Hostess for the Celebrity Entertainers for another 17 years. Valera loved to cook and provide home cook meals for the people she loved. She had an opened door policy and would welcome anyone needing a home. 
Preceded in death by her husband, Fred E. Morgan; sons, Fred R. and Carl; sisters, Eyleen Scheibe, Lois Shank, Ester Hendrix.
Survivors include sons, Terry (Michaelene) of Bella Vista, Ark. and Howard (Gert) of Marion, Kan.; sister, Edith Helmer; 9 grandchildren; 22 great-grandchildren; 1 great-great-grandchild; and a large extended family.
Valera was a loving mother and will be deeply missed by all her friends and family.
Funeral Service was held Monday, Feb. 18, 2019, at Eastmoor United Methodist Church. Visitation was held Sunday, February 17, 2019, at Zeiner Funeral Home in Marion. Memorials have been established with St. Luke Hospital, and Marion Senior Center and sent in c/o Zeiner Funeral Home 205 Elm St. Marion, KS 66861.

Alvena Irene Dewey

Alvena Irene Dewey, age 72, of Syracuse, Kan., passed away Tuesday, Feb. 5, 2019, at her home in Syracuse.  She was born April 18, 1946, in Lakin, Kan., the daughter of Jim and Irene (Hanson) Zahnter.

Alvena grew up in Syracuse and had worked as a waitress, cook, and machinist.  She enjoyed reading, watching old western movies, crocheting, sewing, baking, and making homemade noodles.  She raised chickens, farm animals, and cared for any stray animals or people that need special attention.  Alvena loved nothing more than spending time with her family.

She is survived by her significant other of 32 years, Thomas Simpson of Syracuse; children, Pamela LaCost and husband Duane of Kendall, Kan., Wade Dewey of Yazoo City, Miss., Kimberly Dewey of Garden City, Kan., and Daniel Dewey of Syracuse; brothers, Sonny Murphy of Florida, Chad Zahnter of Kansas, Gordon Zahnter of Great Bend, Kan., and Alvin Zahnter of Russell, Kan.; sisters, Beverly Beer of Tulsa, Okla., Louetta Edwards of Mesquite, Nev., and Laura Beesley of Tulsa; six grandchildren, Shawn, David, Brand, Colby, Daniel, and Erin; and one great-grandchild, Nicholas.

Alvena is preceded in death by her parents; brothers, Ron, Herman, and Jimmy; and sister, Wilma.

Memorial service was held on Monday, Feb. 11, 2019, at New Life Fellowship Church in Syracuse, with Pastor Bill Roberts officiating.  Memorial contributions may be given to Alvena Dewey Memorial Fund in care of Garnand Funeral Home, PO Box 715, Johnson, Kansas 67855.  Condolences may be posted at

Judith Vayrene Campbell


Judith Vayrene Campbell, age 73, passed away on Wednesday, Jan. 30, 2019 at St. Catherine Hospital in Garden City, Kan.  Judy was born Jan. 16, 1946 in Syracuse, Kan., the daughter of James & Bessie (Phillips) McGinness.  She was a homemaker and was the former owner/operator/ cook at Campbell’s Corner in Tribune for more than 30 years.  Judy was an avid Solitaire player, liked to crotchet and loved taking care of her dogs.

On May 18, 1960 she married Harlan D. Campbell in Tribune.  Harlan, Sr. passed away on Jan. 7, 2019 in Garden City.

She is survived by three children, Harlan D. Campbell, Jr., Erica Trevino, and Vayrena Hamilton, all of Tribune; two siblings, Jimmy Jay McGinnis of Larned, Kan. and Juanita I. Ledesma of El Paso, Texas; one grandchild, Judd A. Ramsey of Tribune; and 10 nieces and nephews. Her parents, a daughter, Tammy Campbell, and two brothers, Carl McGinness & Claude McGinness precede her in death.

Private funeral services will be held at a later date. Burial will be in Greeley County Cemetery in Tribune. Memorials may be given to the Kansas Trapshooters Assn. in care of the funeral home.

Friends called on Tuesday, Feb. 5, 2019 at Price & Sons Funeral Home in Tribune, Kansas. Condolences may be sent to the family through the funeral home website at

Don Alan Holmes

Funeral Services for Holly, Colo. resident, Don Holmes will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Friday, Feb. 1, 2019 at the First Baptist Church in Holly with Pastor Carl Kissell officiating.  Interment will follow in the Holly Cemetery.  Visitation for Don will be held from 1 until 7 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 31, 2019 at Valley Memorial Funeral Chapel in Holly.
Don Alan Holmes passed away on Jan. 27, 2019 at Holly Nursing Care Center in Holly at the age of 60. Don was born to Delmar and Patsy (Schlager) Holmes on June 25, 1958 in Ulysses, Kan. Don’s arrival came during wheat harvest and amazingly enough, Delmar had time to go get them from the hospital. Don attended Webb Country School until the fifth grade, then went to Holly schools and graduated in 1976. Don was active in sports, playing football and was on the wrestling team, where he placed second at the state tournament his senior year.
Don married Linda Hackney in 1977. Their son, Darren was born Dec. 31, 1985. Don loved Darren and always wanted the best for him.
In his younger years, Don spent many hours feeding bucket calves and always pitched in with all the chores. Following high school graduation, Don farmed south of Holly, and later received his Business degree from Oklahoma Panhandle State University.
He loved to watch and talk about sports--especially the Oakland Raiders. You could often find Don cheering on the teams at the area sporting events. He really enjoyed his job as an assistant coach of the Holly High School wrestling team for several years. 
Don loved playing card games and being with his family. Don was very social and never met a stranger. He loved to talk to people and was very generous as many of you know.
In the last few years, Don lost his eye sight and due to his health, he moved into Holly Nursing Care Center. Don loved God and was a longtime member of the Holly First Baptist Church. He also loved to sing and knew every word of many hymns. Don brought joy and comfort to his family and everyone he was around.
We will miss Don and know he is in heaven with his mom praising God.
Don is survived by his father, Delmar (Sally) Holmes of Holly; siblings, Delma (Mike) Cliett of Colorado Springs, Colo., Jimmy (Jan) Holmes of Holly, and Vicki (Rick) Berndt of Moore, Okla.; son, Darren Holmes of Syracuse, Kan.; many other relatives and friends.
He was preceded in death by his mother, Patsy Holmes and nephew, Jesse Holmes.
Memorial contributions may be made to Holly Fire and Ambulance in care of Valley Memorial Funeral Chapel, P.O. Box 950, Lamar, Colorado 81052.
For more information or to leave online condolences, please visit

John Graber

John Graber, passed away at the ISB Care Home in Syracuse, Kan, on Jan. 26, 2019, at the age of 86. He was born on Dec. 22, 1932 in Pretty Prairie, Kan., the son of John A. Graber and Carrie (Flickner) Graber.

John began his life in Pretty Prairie, and at the the age of 15 months old he moved with his family to Kendall, Kan. He attended Kendall High School and graduated in 1951. In 1953 he began his military service in the United States Army serving in the Korean War. In 1955, he completed his military service and returned to Kendall to help his father farm. On July 13, 1958, he married Anna Laura Ploeger in Deerfield, Kan. They made their home on Anna’s grandparents farm. To this union two children were born, Janice and Bryan. He enjoyed living on the farm for most of his life and resided there until his passing.

John was a member of the Kendall United Methodist Church, past member of the Kendall United Methodist Church Board and Kendall School Board, and was very avid in running the Kendall Scoreboard/Time Keeper at all the basketball games, a member of the Wheatland Electric Board, and also a board member of the Kendall Co-op. He enjoyed farming, riding his motorcycle, traveling, playing basketball, bowling, baseball, and his greatest enjoyment was spending time with his grandkids and great grandkids.

He was preceded in death by his parents, John and Carrie Graber; four sisters, Florence Arleen Boese, Helen Marie Bell, Selma Ann Ross, and Alice Eileen Jury.

He is survived by his spouse, Anna Laura (Ploeger) Graber of Kendall; a son, Bryan (wife Becky) Graber of Kendall; a daughter, Janice Simon of Syracuse; brother, Marvin “Babe” (wife Laura) Graber of Syracuse; four grandchildren, Jed (wife Stephanie) Simon of Kendall, Justin (wife Ronna) Simon of Syracuse, Dustin Graber of Kendall, and BryAnna (husband Darrin) Sibley of Kendall; four great grandchildren, Tyler (wife Jessica) Timm of Topeka, Kan., Stella Simon of Kendall, Chaz Simon of Kendall, and Emma Simon of Syracuse; and many family members and friends.

Funeral Services will be held Wednesday, Jan. 30, 2019 at 10 a.m. (MST) at the First United Methodist Church in Syracuse. Burial will follow in the Kendall Cemetery in Kendall.

Visitation will be held Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2019, from 3 to 7 p.m. (MST), at the Fellers Funeral Home LLC in Syracuse.

Condolences may be sent to In-lieu-of-flowers memorial contributions may be payable Kendall United Methodist Church or the ISB Care Unit, sent in care of Fellers Funeral Home & Monuments LLC, P.O. Box 1253, 401 N. Sumner, Syracuse, KS 67878. 620-384-5100.

Ronald “Ron” R. Ewy


Ronald “Ron” R. Ewy, passed away at his home in Wichita, Kan. on Jan. 22, 2019, at the age of 68. He was born on Sept. 15, 1950 in Coldwater, Kan., the son of Ray Victor Ewy and Josephine Pearl (Jantzen) Ewy.

Ron began his life in Coldwater, and later moved to Syracuse where he attended Syracuse High School and graduated in 1968. He went on to further his education attending Hutchinson Community College and graduated in 1970 with an Associate Degree in Arts. He then attended Adams State College in Alamosa, Colo. and graduated in 1973 with a Bachelor Degree in Arts. He continued his education at Adams State College earning his Master Degree in Arts in 1976. He went on to earn another Masters Degree attending Northwestern Oklahoma State University and graduating in 1984 with a Masters Degree in Education. On Aug. 20, 1972, he married Carolyn S. Schafer in Syracuse and they made their home in Syracuse. To this union two daughters were born, Lena Rachelle and Raegen Michelle. Ron taught in Syracuse for 37 years including Elementary PE teacher, Elementary History teacher, Junior/Senior High School Counselor, Junior High School Athletic Director, Cross Country Coach, Track Coach, Basketball Coach, Football Coach, and STUCCO Sponsor. In 2011, he retired from teaching and began working for Coleman Landscape until 2014, when he moved with Carolyn to Wichita, Kan. to be near their kids and grandkids. He went to work for Nate Grusing where he continued working on landscaping and sprinkler systems. He became a track and field official with the USA track and field association, and was a board member of the Shocker Track Club. He enjoyed living in Wichita and resided there until his passing.

Ron was a member of the Lions Club, First United Methodist Church, and was a Volunteer Firefighter, all of Syracuse. He enjoyed being with his family, mentoring, teaching and coaching, fishing, taking care of lawns and making the world look nice, picking on his grandkids, nieces, nephews or kids, golfing, playing cards, hunting, helping others, going to church, riding his bike, watching his nephews playing sports, and going to Cheyenne Frontier Days.

Ron is survived by his wife Carolyn; daughters, Rachelle Ewy and Raegen (Heath) Westeman; grandchildren Ava and Grayson Westeman; brother Randy (Lorra) Ewy all of Wichita; nephews Adam (Sarah) Ewy of El Dorado and Kyle (Laura) Ewy, of Wichita; in-laws, Risa (Dennis) DeVaney of Garden City, Kan., Gwen (Roger) Chance of Olathe, Rebecca (David) Adams of Cape Girardeau, Mo., Kevin (Kathy) Schafer of Aurora, Colo. and Kyle (Cindy) Schafer of Denver, Colo.; aunts, Betty Ewy of Coldwater, Mary Lou Ewy of Dodge City and Carol (Milton) Kingsley of Arkansas City, Kan.; many nephews, nieces, other family, friends and students. He was preceded in death by his parents Ray & Jo Ewy; grandparents, Rudolph & Lizzie Ewy, Allen & Viola Jantzen; uncles Ben Ewy, Gene Ewy & Wallace Jantzen; aunts Faye Rudd & Ruby Ewy; and parents-in-law Ray & LaVerda Schafer.

Memorial Services will be Monday, Jan. 28, 2019 at 2 p.m. (MST)at the Barney Akers Gymnasium, in Syracuse. Burial will take place at a later date.

Condolences may be sent to In-lieu-of-flowers memorial contributions may be payable to  Ron Ewy Memorial Scholarship, sent in care of Fellers Funeral Home & Monuments LLC, P.O. Box 1253, 401 N. Sumner, Syracuse, KS 67878. 620-384-5100

Beginning April 5, 2017, the online edition of The Syracuse Journal is no longer free to read.
If you would like to purchase an e-Edition subscription, please call our office at (620) 384-5640 or email us at If you are a print subscriber and would like the e-Edition, please contact us and we'll send it to you free of charge.
Introductory Price: e-Edition is only $25 per year for up to three years until April 30, 2017. Full price of $36.95 after May 1, 2017.