James F. “Jim” Vanek, Jr.
James. F. “Jim” Vanek, Jr., 73, Hays, died Saturday, January 25, 2020 at UCHealth Hospital in Aurora, Colorado.
He was born April 16, 1946 in Ellsworth, Kansas, the son of James and Anna (Bachura) Vanek. In 1964 he graduated from Wilson High School and then attended Fort Hays State University where he earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Agriculture. He was a Corporal in the United States Army during the Vietnam Era, stationed in Panama. After his service in the Army, he returned to Fort Hays State University and earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Business. On August 4, 1973 he was united in marriage to Jane E. Wittman at St. Wenceslaus Catholic Church in Wilson, and they celebrated over 46 years of marriage. He was a county supervisor for Farmers Home Administration/ Rural Development and a farmer in Wilson County. He was a member of St. Joseph Catholic Church in Hays, Hays American Legion Post #173, and St. Mary’s Third Degree Knights of Columbus Council #6984. Throughout his lifetime, most important to Jim was his faith, family, and farming.
Survivors include his wife, Jane of the home in Hays, a son; Justin Vanek and wife Samantha of Hays, two daughters; Jennifer Gronniger and husband Glen of Virginia Beach, VA and Jessica Mobilia and husband Adrian of Millville, DE, six grandchildren; Jacob, Jayce, and Gwenyth Gronniger, Maci and Miley Vanek, and Reilly Mobilia, and a sister-in-law; Cynthia Wittman of Ulysses.
He was preceded in death by his parents and a sister; Marie Vanek.
Mass of Christian burial will be at 2:00 pm on Monday, February 17, 2020 at St. Wenceslaus Catholic Church in Wilson, with Fr. David Metz officiating. Private family inurnment with military honors by the Hays VFW Post #9076 Honor Guard will be at the Kansas Veterans’ Cemetery in WaKeeney. Family will receive friends from 1:00 pm until service time, and recitation of the rosary will be at 1:45 pm, all on Monday, February 17, 2020 at the church. In lieu of flowers, memorials are suggested to the Ellsworth Food Bank, to St. Wenceslaus Church, or to the Kansas Veterans’ Cemetery in WaKeeney, in care of Hays Memorial Chapel Funeral Home. Condolences and memories of Jim may be shared with the family at www.haysmemorial.com
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