Billy "Bill" K. Brubaker, 89, of Manhattan, KS, passed away on December 28, 2019, after a lengthy illness at the Good Shepherd Hospice House. Mass-Hinitt Funeral Home of Junction City, KS, is assisting family with arrangements.
True to Bill's humble nature, his wishes were for cremation with no services. He will be placed at the Kansas Veterans Cemetery in Manhattan, KS.
Memorial contributions are suggested to the Good Shepherd Hospice House, 3801 Vanesta Dr., Manhattan, KS 66503.
Bill was born on October 21, 1930, in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, to Don M. and Emma (Blaine) Brubaker. When he was two years old, the Dust Bowl and the Great Depression were beginning in the Midwest and Plains States. He moved with his family to Hugoton, Kansas, to live on the family farm in this time of adversity. Bill attended and played football for Hugoton High School and graduated in the class of 1949. In the years he attended the high school and played football, the team never lost a game. Because of his athletic prowess, Bill received a football scholarship to play football at Hutchinson Jr. College until 1950 when he was drafted into the United States Navy. In the four years he served, he made two tours abroad to Korea on the USS Antietam (Essex-class) and USS Princeton (Independence-class) Aircraft Carriers. During his time in service he was awarded the United Nations Service Medal, the Korean Service Medal, the Good Conduct Medal, the Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citation and achieved the rank of Naval AE3. With this rank and designation, he learned the trade of being an aircraft electrician. He would use the skills of this trade for the rest of his life. After proudly serving his country, Bill was honorably discharged in November of 1954. He found employment with the Boeing Aircraft Company on the flight line as an aircraft electrician in Wichita, Kansas. There he did electrical work on the last Boeing B-47 Stratojet and the first Boeing B-52 Stratofortress that took off on the Boeing flight line. While gainfully employed with Boeing, Bill sought higher education at Wichita State University. He earned a Degree in Education. He later earned a Degree in Technical Education from Pittsburg State University in 1962. He received his Masters Degree in Trade and Industrial Education. Bill also participated in graduate work at Kansas State University, Kansas University, and Emporia. Bill's first teaching position was as an Electronics teacher at the High School in Winfield, Kansas. He then went on to teach at Wyandotte High School in Kansas City, Kansas. His last teaching position was at the Manhattan Technical School for Trade and Industry. His last place of employment was with the Athletic Department at KSU Bramlage Coliseum.
Bill married Virginia Conway on November 12, 1952, in Wichita, Kansas. They were married 67 years. Their union blessed them with two children, Connie and Mike. True to his teaching nature and sporty demeanor, he taught both his children how to swim. Bill was a "Starter" for over ten years for all of the Manhattan Marlin swim team meets. He also shared his sports expertise with the children of the community when he coached Little League Base Ball.
Bill was an avid sports fan. He was a member of the KSU "Chain Gang" for over ten years as he attended KSU football games. He proudly stated that "This is my front row seat". After his retirement, he and Virginia became season ticket holders for all the KSU football and Men's and Women's basketball games.
Bill was active in the First Baptist Church of Manhattan where he was an usher and a member of several committees. He was also a member of the American Legion of Manhattan and the Senior Center of Manhattan where he played bridge and held the highest score for many years. He was also the president of the #383 Teachers Credit Union for over five years.
Bill was a man of many hobbies, but his great passion was his cow-calf operation. He was one of the first ranchers to start the calf 4H sale. One of his calves, bought by a 4H'er, was entered into competition in the Riley County Fair and won first place. That same calf was then entered into competition at the Kansas State Fair in Hutchinson and again won first place. The calf ultimately made it to the prestigious American Royal in Kansas City.
Bill was a kind and giving man. He made sure to donate his blood for those in need until he turned 80 years old. For this gift of life he was awarded 2 gold pins.
Above all, Bill was a loving husband, caring and patient father, adoring grandfather, and beloved friend. He will be missed.
Bill is survived by his loving family; his wife Virginia of Manhattan, KS; his daughter, Connie English of Topeka, KS; his son, Mike K. (Jan) Brubaker of South Lake Tahoe, CA; his two grandchildren McQuade Brubaker of San Diego, CA, and Madison Brubaker of Longbeach, CA; his brother Ray Brubaker of Billings, MT; and a host of loving family and friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents and his brothers Wayne, Max, and Dane.
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