Martin McCormick

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Martin McCormick, or "Mac" as he was affectionately known by most family and friends, passed away on Saturday, Dec. 10, at his home in rural Butler. His wife Lois (Westerhold) McCormick was at his side, as she has been since they attended Metz High School together.

Mac was born on March 17, 1929, at the family home in rural Metz, and he attended two country schools in the Metz area, Pryor Creek School and Wolf School. He graduated from Metz High School in 1947. He was an athlete, playing basketball and baseball (catcher), he served as a class officer, and although he grew up in the Depression and the war years, Mac was never without a job. He worked for local farmers, rebuilt and sold cars, and did other odd jobs.

On Feb. 11, 1950, he and Lois married, beginning their 66 years together. In 1951 he entered the Air Force and served as an airplane mechanic until 1955, earning the rank of staff sergeant. His first posting was Sheppard Airforce Base in Wichita Falls, Texas, where their eldest daughter, Terri Ann (Ellis) was born in 1952. In 1955 their second daughter Sheila Sue was born but lived only a few days. In 1956 they lost their third child, Tommy, who was stillborn. In 1963, they completed their family, adopting Donald Dean, who was then 18 months old. After leaving the Air Force, Martin and Lois moved to Rich Hill, and he went to work for Bendix, commuting to Kansas City each day for 12 years.

In 1968, Martin and Lois moved their family to a farm in rural Butler, raising cattle and row crops. Farming was taxing work, but somehow he and Lois managed to fit in all the things that really mattered: dinner at the family table every night, quail hunting with family and friends, camping trips to Stockton Lake every summer, advice and council when needed, and endless car repairs and projects. He was always there to help.

Mac was a devoted husband, father, and grandfather, and he was also a beloved son and adored older brother and uncle. He was loving and helpful to his parents, Forest and Verna (Webb) McCormick, until they passed in 1981, and he was a mentor to and a protector of Delores, Rex, and Evelyn. Just being around him made those who loved him happier. He possessed a magic that most people do not but that everyone wants to be near. Anyone lucky enough to be related to Mac felt special.

In his last two years of life, he faced cancer, which he beat, and Parkinson's, which he ultimately could not. But he never complained. As always, he worked hard and did what he was supposed to. He was a rock to his family, a true partner to his wife, and an inspiration to all who had the great honor of knowing him. He will be profoundly missed.

Martin is survived by his wife Lois (Westerhold) McCormick of the home; one daughter, Terri Ellis of Wichita, Kan.; one son, Don McCormick and wife Christine of Raymore, Mo.; one granddaughter, Sonita Loyd, of the home; two grandsons, Gregory Loyd and wife Brooke of Andover, Mass., and Bradly McCormick; two step-granddaughters, Rachel Beeley and husband Alan of Lee's Summit, Mo., and Angela Blaine of Lee's Summit, Mo.; four great-grandchildren, Ian Loyd, Jessica Loyd, Owen Loyd, and Ainsley Loyd, all of Andover, Mass.; one sister, Delores Cronin of Kansas City, Kan.; one brother Rex and wife Vera of Louisburg, Kan.; two brothers-in-law Lenny Dale of Hume, and Wayne Westerhold of Metz; one sister-in-law, Ruby Wikoff of Metz; and many nieces, nephews, and cousins. He was preceded in death by his parents; his sister, Evelyn Dale; and two infant children.

Funeral services 10 a.m., Friday, Dec. 16, Schowengerdt Funeral Chapel, Butler, with burial in the Greenlawn Cemetery, Rich Hill. Contributions to Friends of Greenlawn or Shawnee Mission Cancer. Online condolences