Joe Baumchen, a lifelong Emmett, KS resident, passed away Sunday, March 19th, at Redbud Plaza Assisted Living, Onaga, KS.
Joe was born March 17, 1924, son of William J. and Clara Steinmitz Baumchen. He grew up in the Maple Hill/ St. Marys area, graduating from St. Marys High School in 1942. Joe began farming with his dad, purchasing the family farm north of Emmett in 1951.
Joe first saw Roberta DeVader at Holy Cross church in Emmett, noticing the “pretty girl who sat in the front row” with her family. They later met at a dance at the St. Marys’ Armory. They were married February 27, 1954. They began their married life in Emmett, buying their farm north of Emmett in 1957. Joe had a diversified farming operation raising first dairy cattle, then beef cattle, hogs and crops. His son Bill joined him in his farming operation. Joe continued as an active contributor to the Baumchen farming operation consulting with Bill until his final days.
Joe was active in community service, including the Emmett School Board, Emmett Lions Club, Pottawatomie Extension Board, and Holy Cross Church Board. He was very proud of the fact that he was a 3rd Degree Knight in the Knights of Columbus for 80 years.
His greatest civic duty that he was most proud of was being a founding member of the Cross Creek Watershed Board from the 1960s until he was 98. This included the construction of 33 dams on cross creek which helped to prevent flooding on cropland and the community of Rossville. This endeavor dramatically changed farming operations throughout the Cross Creek valley. He served as president for many years.
Joe and Roberta loved watching sports, for over 40 years they were fixtures at Emmett, and St. Marys sporting events. Joe even watched the St. Marys State football championship this past fall, via the internet, and was very excited when they won!
Joe was preceded in death by his parents, William and Clara, his beloved wife Roberta in 2021, their daughter, Karen Baumchen, and two son-in-laws, David Ronnebaum and Jeff Valentine; a sister, Sister Wilma Baumchen, OSB; and his brother, Daniel Baumchen.
He is survived by his sister, Wilma Jo Stevens, Oskaloosa, and his children Kathy (Dave) Brunin, St. Marys, Bill (Terri) Baumchen, Emmett, Brenda (Martin) Channel, Emmett, Sharon (Dan) Heim, Nashville, Beth Ronnebaum, Ottawa, Marilee (John) Valentine Beins, Baldwin City, Dan (Lynet) Baumchen, Parkville, MO; 20 Grandchildren Alesha Channel, St. Marys, Mike (Hillary) Brunin, Eudora, Brandon Channel, Wamego, Greg (Katie) Brunin , San Antonio, Derek (Brittany) Ronnebaum, Las Vegas, Dylan (Holly) Heim, Nashville, Laura (Mike) Mehring, Olathe, Nicole (Lance) Burroughs, Ottawa, Kristen (Bryant) Clark, Ottawa, Dayne Baumchen (Paige), Silverthorne, CO, Taylor (Jared) Eisenhower, Knoxville, TN, Aaron McDowell, Emmett, Kristal (Michael) Short, Dearborn, MO, Mitchell Baumchen , Columbia,MO, Hannah (Tegan) Hammer, Rossville, Will Baumchen, Emmett, Dayton (Cassie) Valentine Lenexa, Emma Heim, Kansas City, Corey (Nils) Bergsten, Holton, Jordan Baumchen, Emmett; 23 great-grandchildren, Corbin and Quinn Brunin, Sam, Cora and Nellie Brunin, Wesley Mehring, Kai Baumchen, Harley and Tarynn Channel, Jeffrey, Everett, and Marielle Short, Piper and Duke Heim, Hanna & Jack Ronnebaum, Zayne, Ruby & Aspen Burroughs, Tristan, Aiden, and Gavon Clark, and Jordi Hammer.
Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10:00 A.M. Thursday, March 23, 2023, at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in St. Marys. Interment will be in Mt. Calvary Cemetery, St. Marys. Mr. Baumchen will lie in state and the family will receive friends from 5:00 until the 7:00 P.M. Rosary at Piper Funeral Home on Wednesday, March 22, 2023.
In Lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to St. Marys Community Food Pantry or the St. Marys High School Activity Fund and sent in care of Piper Funeral Home, 714 Maple St., St. Marys, Kansas 66536. To leave online condolences go to www.piperfuneralhome.com.