Wilma Irene Gillespie

Wilma Irene Gillespie, 85, Leavenworth, Kansas passed away Friday, Oct. 16, 2020 at The Piper, Kansas City, Kansas.

Wilma was born Nov. 15, 1934 in Tonganoxie, Kansas, the daughter of William and Irene (Cox) Denholm. She graduated from Tonganoxie High School in 1952. She graduated from Kansas State University in 1956 with a bachelor’s degree in education. From there she began a teaching career that spanned over 40 years. Wilma was a kindergarten teacher for the Fort Leavenworth, Kansas school system and then at David Brewer Elementary in Leavenworth, Kansas. Wilma retired from teaching to become a full-time, devoted, and loving grandmother. She married James Gillespie on March 30, 1957. He preceded her in death on Dec. 16, 2006.

Wilma was a member of the First United Methodist Church, Leavenworth, Kansas. She was also an Eastern Star, a member of PEO, AD chapter, and Whittier Club. Wilma enjoyed playing bridge and bunco. She was a fan of the Chiefs, Royals, Jayhawks, and her beloved Wildcats.

Survivors include her son and daughter-in-law, Mike and Debbi Gillespie, Leavenworth, Kansas; a sister, Barbara Sluiter, Saginaw, Michigan; and two grandchildren, Matthew and Katie Gillespie.

A private burial will be in Maple Grove Cemetery in Tonganoxie, Kansas on Oct. 27, 2020. The family plans to hold a remembrance in the future when conditions are safe to gather with family and friends.

Published on October 22, 2020