Elson Eugene Cook, 85, of Russell, Kansas, died Monday, June 16, 2014 at Main Street Manor in Russell.

Elson was born January 31, 1929 in Clay Center, Nebraska, the son of Cecil Eugene and Margaret Catherine (Urbach) Cook.  He grew up in Clay Center and graduated from Clay Center High School in 1947.  He then moved to Russell to work in the oil fields.

Elson was united in marriage to Valerie Vanderbur on January 28, 1951 in Russell.  This union was blessed with four children:   Rebecca, Carolyn, Kevin and Keith.  They made their home in Russell.

Elson served his country in the U.S. Army Air Corps during the Korean War.  He was a cryptographer and communication specialist.

Elson was a postman in Russell for over 15 years.  He also was the owner and operator of a dairy farm north of Russell for many years.  He had several rental homes in the area and worked for Beaver Express delivery. He truly was a “jack-of-all-trades.”  Elson and his wife attended the Otterbein United Methodist Church. They were members of the Good Sam’s RV Club. Elson enjoyed hunting, fishing, camping at Lake Wilson, and playing bridge.  He had a sweet tooth and enjoyed eating the cookies and candies Valerie made!  He was very devoted to his family. Elson loved God and endeavored to share that love with all he met.

Surviving family include his wife of 63 years, Valerie of the home; daughters, Rebecca Finnegan and husband Jon of Russell, Kansas and Carolyn Toalson and husband David of Broken Arrow, Oklahoma; sons, Kevin Cook and wife Tammy of Wichita, Kansas and Keith Cook and wife Denise of Spring, Texas; brothers, Wayne Cook of North Las Vegas, Nevada and Jim Cook of Clay Center, Nebraska; sisters, Mary Ann McClanahan of Tucson, Arizona and Faye Sherlock of Wayne, Nebraska; ten grandchildren and three great grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his parents and brother, Don Cook.

Celebration of Elson’s life will be held at 4:30 P.M. Saturday, June 21, 2014 at Pohlman-Varner-Peeler Mortuary of Russell with Pastor Earl Haggard officiating.  Cremation will follow the service.  Visitation will be from 9 AM to 8 PM Friday, June 20, 2014 at the mortuary with the family present to greet friends from 6 PM to 7 PM.  A memorial has been established with Alzheimer’s Research Foundation.  Contributions and condolences may be sent to Pohlman-Varner-Peeler Mortuary, who is in charge of these arrangements.


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