On November 10, 2022 Mary June (Reynolds, Sedlacek) Sokolik lost her battle against dementia. June was born June 1, 1925 to Glenn and Naomi Reynolds. She was born and raised in the Great Depression and came of age during WWII. There is no doubt that this forged her ability to face life with grace and without complaint. She was the third youngest of 8 children raised on a farm in Kansas. After high school she obtained a teaching certificate and taught school for a short time. In 1944 Vern Sedlacek traveled to Baltimore, MD where June had gone to help care for her sister with a new baby. They were married and then went to Tennessee where Vern was stationed before being deployed to France. After the war, she and Vern raised 4 children on a farm in northern Kansas.
As farm women often do, she took a job in town to help support the family. For 28 years, she worked at the Safeway store where she became the head checker (at a time when all the prices were memorized) and over all store assistant. When the Safeway store closed, she took the opportunity to be the store manager for a new Casey’s convenience store. She quietly ignored a lot of the purchasing suggestions made by the corporate office and quickly grew the inventory. She did recall her fear one day when a limo pulled up in the parking lot and 2 men with sun glasses on got out and approached her. She thought her demise might be coming but instead it was the owner’s of Casey’s coming to award her for having the record for paying off a store.
In retirement, June moved with her second husband, Mick Sokolik to Arizona. While she missed being close to family, she loved Arizona and lived there until Mick’s death in 2010. She then returned to Auburn, KS where her daughter Laura and son-in-law Jim oversaw her care until her death.
June is remembered by her children for being a teacher of how to do things from milking a cow to sewing a blouse, as well as demonstrating the ability to carry on through difficulty. She tolerated the antics of her children and believed that being in the dirt was healthy. At a time when water was heated on the stove for baths and laundry, she admitted that sometimes it was easier to wash the sheets than 4 kids. She welcomed all the strays her kids brought home from a pet squirrel that sat on her shoulder while she did dishes; to the pet coyote that tormented the farm chickens; to the wayward friends of her children.
She practiced a policy of non-interference and ongoing support to how her children lived their lives. Secrets, happy or tragic, were safe with her. As grandchildren and great grandchildren came along she saw it as her job to simply love each one as they were without judgement.
June at the age of 97 is preceded in death by many: her parents Glenn and Naomi Reynolds; her siblings Irene Terpening, Edgar Reynolds, Lucille Mundwiler, Laura Lee Nutsch, LeRoy Reynolds and Elwood Reynolds; Her husbands Vern Sedlacek and Mick Sokolik; her son Lonnie Sedlacek and great grandson Adam Timmons.
She is survived by her sister Margreuite (Bob) Cornell; children Laura (Jim) Timmons, Larry Sedlacek, Le (Terry) Sedlacek and daughter-in-law Elaine (Lonnie) Sedlacek; Step daughter Becky Griffin (Don) and son Logan; 11 grandchildren; 15 great grandchildren and 11 great great grandchildren.
Funeral services will be held at the graveside Saturday November 19, 2022, at 11:00 am, at National Bohemian Cemetery (Kopsa), 2731 Queen Road, Cuba, Kansas. A lunch and time for remembrance will be held following the service at the Bel Villa restaurant located at 213 US Hwy 36, Belleville, KS from noon to 4 pm.
Memorial donations may be sent to: Alzheimer’s Association, Heart of America Chapter, 3846 W 75th street, Prairie Village, KS 66208.
Tibbetts-Fischer Funeral Home is assisting the family with these arrangements, www.tibbettsfischerfuneralhome.com