Martha Jeanne Medsker, age 84, died at her home on June 2, 2014 after a brief illness.
Martha Jeanne Medsker, age 84, died at her home on June 2, 2014 after a brief illness. The only child of Harry H. Byerrum and Prudye Saunders Byerrum, Martha spent her youth in Northwest Missouri and graduated from Maryville High School. She later attended Northwest Missouri State University, majoring in Home Economics and Physical Education.
Employment opportunities took her to Kansas City, where she worked for Harold Ensley, and, in 1954, she and Dean Eldon Medsker of Graham, Mo. were married. Martha and Eldon had two daughters, Deanna (Ken) Day of Raleigh, N.C., and Gina Medsker (John) Sanborn of Alexandria, Va.
First and foremost, a wife and mother, Martha volunteered thousands of hours, often as a room mother for both of her children and as a PTA officer and member. She was actively involved in Girl Scouts as a troop leader and later in training and leadership roles within the former Santa Fe Trail Council. Leavenworth Girl Scouts, and their parents, who were involved in cookie sales or who attended Camp Tzigane during the 1960’s, would remember Martha. As a lifetime member of the Girls Scouts of America she was awarded for her outstanding service as Neighborhood Chairperson of the Sun Fellers Neighborhood from 1968 – 1985 and served on the Board of the Santa Fe Trail Council from 1987 – 1990.
She was an active member of the Fraternal Order of Eagles, Aerie 55, and served as President of the Auxiliary in 1986 – 1987. As a member of the Women’s Ritual Team, her travels took her to National Conventions throughout the United States and Canada.
In addition to volunteering at Cushing Hospital and the Carroll Museum, Martha found time to indulge in hobbies such as needlework and interior design. An accomplished seamstress, she taught sewing at Ft. Leavenworth and the Leavenworth YMCA and helped design and produce many dance costumes for her daughters and their classmates in Leavenworth.
In the 1970’s, she combined her creative and managerial talents as co-owner of Browser’s Corner, a crafts store that sold supplies and offered arts classes in Leavenworth. When her daughters were small, she was a successful Avon Lady. She was an election poll worker for many years, worked with County Extension, and attended classes at KCKCC.
No one was a stranger, and in addition to the many friends and relatives she knew and cherished through the years, she was especially proud of her daughters and their accomplishments, and devoted to her pets, Punkin, Buddy, Brito, and Junior.
Martha’s daughters would like to thank her many friends and the Leavenworth County Council on Aging for their assistance over the years, but are especially grateful for the wonderful care provided by the nurses and staff on 2West at Cushing Hospital, the home-health assistance provided by Michelle Graham and her special employees, and for St.Luke’s Hospice, which made it possible for Martha to spend her last few days at home with her daughters and her dogs.
Visitation will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, June 5, 2014 at the Davis Funeral Chapel with an Eagles Auxiliary Service at 6 p.m. Funeral service will be held 11 a.m. Friday, June 6, 2014 at the Davis Funeral Chapel. The Rev. Robert “Bob” Atwell will officiate. Burial will be at 2:30 p.m. Friday at the Nodaway Memorial Gardens Cemetery in Maryville, Mo.
Memorial contributions may be given to Leavenworth area Council On Aging or Leavenworth Animal Welfare Society.
Condolences may be left at www.davisfuneralchapelinc.com.