Rex E. Ford, 81, of Tecumseh, Kansas, passed away peacefully at home on Monday, July 08th, 2019, after his courageous battle with cancer. His wife Scarlett was by his side. He lived a full life, and was a very decent man.
Visitation will be Friday, July 19th, from 6pm to 9pm, at Shawnee Heights United Methodist Church, 6020 SE 44th Street, Tecumseh, KS. A memorial service and celebration of life will be Saturday, July 20th, 2019 at 10:00am, at Shawnee Heights UMC. Inurnment to be on a later date at High Prairie Cemetery, Benedict, KS. Cremation arrangements are facilitated by Midwest Cremation Society. www.midwestcremationsociety.com
Rex was born at home near Hale, Kansas, to Dayton and Marie (Kimzey) Ford on November 24th, 1937; one of 11 children. Rex graduated from Benedict High School, Benedict, KS., in 1955. He married Scarlett A. Wing on June 15th, 1958, at High Prairie UMC, Benedict, KS. He graduated from Neosho County Junior College with an Associates Degree and went on to attend and graduate from Emporia State University, with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Industrial Arts and Social Sciences, and a Master’s Degree in Education; also from Emporia State.
Rex was an industrial arts, woodworking and drafting teacher for many years at various Kansas public schools, including; Highland Park Junior and Senior High, Capper Junior High, and Boswell Junior High, all in Topeka. He also taught at High Schools in Colby and Norwich Kansas.
Rex and Scarlett Ford owned Ford’s Laundromats and Car Wash, in Topeka, for many years, before retiring. As a business owner, Rex could always be found performing routine to complex maintenance on washing machines, dryers, car wash equipment, and much more. He had an uncanny knack for fixing things, which most people would have called for a repairman.
Over the years, Rex served in many volunteer capacities, including as an adult mentor and leader in the Decker 4-H club, and was a 45-year member of Shawnee Heights UMC, where he served faithfully on many committees and worshiping regularly. He had a talent and passion for mechanical fixes, woodworking, and gardening on his land in Tecumseh, which he loved. Rex was an avid KU Basketball and KC Royals Fan, spending countless hours following the Jayhawks during March Madness glued to the games on TV. Rex loved to be in touch with everything in the news and the political realm.
Rex loved to fish, and was a good teacher. Many of his children and grandchildren, took his advice and learned the art from him. For many years, he would patiently teach the art of tying a lure to the end of the line, searching out the best spots at farm ponds, and during his peak, he was incredibly efficient at cleaning the catch. Fishing memories with Rex, have been immortalized in hundreds of photos.
Rex loved to camp and travel with family and friends. He and Scarlett traveled extensively, including trips to Alaska, Canada, many of the lower 48 states and various countries in Europe. He enjoyed the natural beauty this world had to offer, and he was as much at home in one of his campers at a campground, as anywhere. Family and friends will fondly recall the many campground cards games and fellowship time they spent with Rex.
Rex was considered by many, as a master woodworker. Over the years, he built or crafted hundreds of beautiful pieces of furniture, elaborate clocks and much more.
Rex was highly respected in his community and his church. He gave countless hours of his time to his church, and others in need. Rex volunteered for several years at the I-Care Food pantry, in Topeka, caring for those less fortunate. Rex went on many United Methodist Church mission trips with his fellow church members and his wife; traveling to Mississippi after Hurricane Katrina, Mexico, and much more, to make repairs and assist those in need. Rex used his God given talents to try to make the world a little bit better for others.
Rex is survived by his wife Scarlett (Wing) Ford, and several children and family members, including; Scott (Mechele) Ford, Ralph (Cindy) Nelson, of Topeka, Laurie Ford of Loveland Colorado, and Stuart (Lisa) Ford also of Topeka; and siblings; Agnes Segard of Wichita, KS., Roger (Jane) Ford of St. Louis, and Neil (Pat) Ford of Chanute, KS. Rex is also survived by many amazing grandchildren; Amy Pinger, Aaron Nelson, Ali Delaney, Kortne Ford, Natalie Ford, Freddie Ford, Dylan Ford, Sydney Ford and Kayla Ford and by numerous great-grandchildren; James and Jackson Pinger, and Marshall, Oliver, Thomas, and Henry Nelson. Rex also had numerous nieces and nephews and great-nieces and nephews.
Rex was preceded in death by his parents, several siblings, and by three children; Brett Ford, Gale Ford, Richard Ford, and one grandchild Alex Ford.
Suggested Memorial Contributions are Shawnee Heights United Methodist Church or the I-Care Food Pantry, of Topeka.
The family of Rex Ford extends our sincere thanks to all of the fine professionals in the Stormont-Vail and Cotton O’Neil Clinics, Cancer Centers, and Midland Hospice. Your professionalism and caring touch have not gone unnoticed.