Monday January 15,2018 Gerald L Hutchison, 90! holding hands with his wife of 70 years passed away at Montgomery Place in Independence, KS. Cremation has taken place by request of the family at Loran Fawcett Chapel of Neodesha, KS. A Private family graveside service will take place at Valley Cemetery in Parsons, KS.
Born April 23, 1927 the son of George L and Leona (Brown) Hutchison began life in rural Chanute, KS during the depression. Because the one room country school house didn't have enough students he was sent to school a year early. Gerald went to Chanute High School where he played both Basketball and Baseball - he was better at Baseball - his father wouldn't let him play Football because he was afraid he would get hurt. He graduated High School with a scholarship to play Basketball and Baseball at McPherson College in the spring of 1944. At this time WW ll was in full swing. Hutch was too young to enlist in the Navy without parental approval and his Father who fought in WW l wasn't about to give his blessing.
Because most of the older boys were in the service Hutch got the chance to start on the Basketball team and he made the most of it. To quote from his college annual "Individual scoring honors were achieved by Gerald Hutchison, young freshman ace, with 244 points." That year McPherson only had 3 losses- 2 of which to Wichita State University. They recorded 13 victories including 2 wins over Emporia State Teachers College. The team did well enough to be invited to the National Invitational Tournament in Kansas City - but were unable to accept.
After his first year of college Hutch - now old enough not to need his Dad's permission - enlisted in the US Navy. Before the supply ship he was aboard made it to the Pacific theater the war was over. Hutch came back to McPherson to finish up his BS Degree in Mathematics. He graduated in spring of 1949 and took his first teaching job in western Kansas that fall. It was in the fall of 1953 that Hutch accepted the job of Math Teacher and Assistant Basketball and Football Coach in Neodesha. He was excited to take the job. Hutch was head Basketball coach from 1961 to 1971 - during which time his team won 71[%] of their games. The 143 victories they accumulated made Hutch the winningest Basketball coach in Kansas.
In 1972, with his Master's Degree Hutch became the first Athletic Director in Neodesha High School. This was the time that Title Nine required the implementation of Girls Athletics - which put a huge strain on budgets. Few people realized that Hutch coached Jr High for 34 years. He especially loved working with the Jr High kids - and he had a real knack for it. Over the years Hutch literally had thousands of students in his math classes. The last few years he actually had grandchildren of some of the students he had in the first years at Neodesha. By the time he retired from teaching in 1988, he had already given up running the swimming pool in the summer and became a volunteer campground host for the Forest Service in Colorado. After he retired Dee and Hutch continued to travel extensively for many years. They have seen all of Canada and all but three states in the US and made another set of friends. Hutch is probably the only person you know that actually walked to and from work - including going home for lunch - his entire career. He never lived more than two blocks from where he worked.
Hutch is survived by his wife Dolores (Dee) of 70 years of the home. Survivors also include two sons Gary L Hutchison and wife Diana of Garden Plain, KS. and Craig D Hutchison and wife Roxann of Chagrin Falls, OH., 2 Grandchildren Garren L Hutchison and Adam Hutchison, 4 Great Grandchildren Sean, Ashley, Kylie, Gareth L Hutchison and one great-great grandchild Kobe Hutchison, and hundreds of former students and athletes. Hutch is proceeded in death by his parents and one brother Wayne D Hutchison and one sister Helen Bruce and 3 Grandchildren Jennifer, Christin and Nathan Hutchison. Memorials can be made to the Gerald L Hutchison Scholarship Fund and can be left at Loran Fawcett Chapel in Neodesha, KS. On - line condolences can be left to the family by going to www.loranfawcettfuneralhome.com