Clifford Franklin Kopke, 88 of Russell died Sunday, December 01, 2013 at a Littleton, Colorado assisted living facility.
Clifford’s parents were William C. Kopke (1889-1971) and Sophia Adaline Van Deren Kopke (1898-1991). Clifford was born in Emporia Kansas August 31, 1925 and graduated from High School there in 1943. Clifford lived on a farm near Emporia. Clifford was employed by a Tent & Awning Factory before being employed in oil exploration until his enlistment in Navy during WW II (12/14/1943 thru 4/24/1946) serving in the South Pacific on the USS Saginaw Bay CVE-82. Cliff returned to the oil industry after military service and was employed by John O. Farmer (Jones, Shelburne and Farmer in those days) for 51 years (4/20/1947 thru 10/01/1998) working mostly in the Russell area.
Cliff was united in marriage to Margaret Dorothy Brack February 28, 1948 in Wichita. They lived in Hoisington for a period of time before relocating to Russell. Margaret passed away in 8/27/1983. Clifford and Sandra Rall of Colby Kansas enjoyed traveling along with visiting with friends and relatives for many years before Clifford’s relocated to Littleton, Colorado.
Clifford is a member of the St. John Lutheran Church of Russell and member of both the VFW and the American Legion posts in Russell.
Surviving family include his sister Norma Jean (Kopke) Leonard of Emporia, his brother William Carl Kopke of Oklahoma City, Cousin George Osborn of Fayetteville, AR, Son Monte Kopke of Littleton, CO, Granddaughter Melissa (Kopke) Luce of Sacramento, CA, Grandson Chad Kopke of Houston, Great grandsons Miles Ford (4 yrs) and Max Franklin (8 months) Kopke also of Houston and Great granddaughter Halle Sandra Kopke (13 yrs) of Colorado Springs. Also surviving is Nephew James Leonard of Leawood, KS and Niece Sheila (Kopke) Bowman of Leesburg, Virginia.
He was also preceded in death by his parents and wife Margaret.
A celebration of Clifford’s life will be held at 10 A.M. on Monday, December 09, 2013, at the Pohlman-Varner-Peeler Mortuary in Russell, Kansas, with Pastor Roger Dennis officiating. Services will conclude at the mortuary with a private burial following the chapel service. Military rites will be performed at the mortuary by the Russell V.F.W. Post #6240. Visitation will be from 1 P.M. to 8 P.M. Sunday, December 08, 2013, at the mortuary with family present to greet guests from 6 P.M. to 7 P.M. Sunday evening. Pohlman-Varner-Peeler Mortuary of Russell is in charge of the funeral service arrangements.