Marzetta Neeley

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Marzetta Marty Jean Neeley Marzetta Marty Jean Neeley passed away on January 20, 2014, at Stormont-Vail hospital surrounded by her family. She was born January 24, 1928, near Manlius, Illinois, daughter of Roy Mitchell Whitlock and Celia Frances (Grimes) Whitlock. After her mother's death when she was an infant, Marty was raised and subsequently adopted by her aunt and uncle, Robert McKinley Mack Whitlock and Emily Mae (Grimes) Whitlock. She was a 1946 graduate of Serena High School, Serena, Illinois, where she was an enthusiastic cheerleader; and later received her Bachelor in Education and Master of Arts degrees from Illinois State University in 1950 and 1962 respectively. While in college she was named an Honorary Resident of the University and was also a member of Gamma Phi, an honorary gymnastics fraternity/sorority performing on the high bar and in tumbling acts as an active participant of the Gamma Phi Circus for various organizations, colleges and schools throughout the state. Marty also sang in a sextet over the University radio many times. Marzetta was a career business teacher for 36 years in Serena, Illinois; as well as Cleburne, Centralia, and Silver Lake, Kansas, High Schools. She was also an adjunct teacher of shorthand at Washburn University for two years. Her teaching career earned her several awards through the years including being honored twice as an Outstanding Secondary Educator. She received the Citation of Professional Service, was twice nominated for Kansas Teacher of the Year, and was awarded the Certificate of Appreciation to Education. Marty also had some of her educational work published and was on the textbook committee for the State of Kansas. She was a member of the American Legion Auxiliary, the Eastern Star, St. Andrews Presbyterian Church, Women of the Moose, the Kansas National Education Association--Retired, and a life member of the National Education Association. She has been a loyal supporter, devoted member, and officer of the Tau Kappa Chapter of the Phi Tau Omega Sorority. Marty loved her many hobbies of craft projects, painting ceramics, flower gardening, collecting Seraphim Angels and porcelain birds, studying her family's genealogy, and at one time tap dancing with the Recycled Rockettes. She was her happiest when she was planning a party or a trip. She loved to travel and this love took her to many far-off destinations--Europe, Mexico, Canada, Hawaii, and the Caribbean several times. She especially enjoyed taking numerous ocean cruises with her family. She married E. Lee Neeley on June 23, 1973, in the Rose Garden at Gage Park in Topeka. He survives and resides in Topeka. She is also survived by two loving daughters, Susan Winters and her husband, John, of Frankfort, Kansas; and Dianne Dodson and husband Steven of Burlingame, Kansas; six grandchildren, six great-grandchildren; and three step great-grandchildren. Marty also had three step-children, Timothy Neeley of Topeka, Sharon Root and husband John of Topeka, and Scott Neeley and wife Nancy of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and six step-grandchildren. Also surviving are two half-sisters, Rita Welsh and husband George as well as Betty Thomas and husband Junior, both of Illinois, and a host of nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents, a brother, a sister and four half-brothers. Marzetta will lie in state after 2:00 p.m. on Thursday, January 23, 2014, at Penwell-Gabel Mid-Town Chapel, Topeka, where the family will greet friends from 5:00-7:00 p.m. Services will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Friday, January 24, 2014, at St. Andrews Presbyterian Church, Topeka. Entombment will follow at Mount Hope Cemetery, Topeka. Memorials are suggested to be made to St. Andrews Presbyterian Church or the . To leave the family a special message online, visit Marzetta Marty Jean Neeley

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Penwell-Gabel Cremations, Funerals & Receptions
1321 SW 10th Ave
Topeka, KS 66604
(785) 354-8558
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Published in Topeka Capital-Journal on Jan. 22, 2014
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