Austin Duane Potter

Austin Duane Potter, 86, passed away in his home in Leavenworth County surrounded by his loving family on Feb. 27, 2021. 

Austin was born to James and Thelma (Kilgore) Potter on March 9, 1934. He and LaVerne (Kruse) married on Oct. 24, 1953. Austin built a home for his bride using lumber from the trees that he cut down from the family’s pasture. The house was next door to Austin’s parents and would be where the couple lived out their lives.

They had four children between 1955 and 1959: Barbara, Brenda, Brian and Beverly. Belinda came along in 1971.

Austin put his heart and soul into the farm. First, he worked with his father, who purchased a section of the property in 1925. After Austin’s father passed, his son, Brian, became his partner in the family business. The farm and their herd of Polled Hereford cattle expanded over the decades. 

Austin was a quiet, hard-working man. He took his job of being a steward of the land seriously. He was one of the first in the community to establish conservation techniques, and his goal was to improve every piece of ground that he farmed. 

Austin and LaVerne were also faithful members of St. John Lutheran Church in Easton. Austin held many leadership positions within the church and assisted with maintaining the buildings and property. 

Austin’s health declined after the death of LaVerne in 2015. Before her death, he had been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. The disease and years of hard, physical labor eventually led to a decrease in mobility. His family cared for him in his home on the family farm until his death. 

Austin was preceded in death by his parents; LaVerne; his sister, Roberta; and his daughter, Bev. 

Survivors include: Barb Askins (Mike Hall), Topeka; Bren (Ken) Taylor, Emporia; Brian (Renee), Easton; Bill Matney, Berryton, and Lin (Chris) McLeod, Shawnee. Grandchildren include Amy Schwinn, Jeff Potter, Kelly Mailen, Rachel Boucher, Jennifer Baugh, Alexandria Matney, Jonas McLeod, Grace McLeod, Hannah McLeod and Tina Monosmith. Austin had 15 great-grandchildren.

The family suggests that memorial contributions go to Leavenworth Meals on Wheels or St. John Lutheran Church. 

The visitation will be held at Davis Funeral Chapel in Leavenworth on Tuesday, March 2, 2021, from 5-7 p.m. Masks are required. The funeral service will be private. Condolences may be left on Austin’s online guestbook at

Arrangements are entrusted to Davis Funeral Chapel. 

Posted online on March 01, 2021