Elizabeth David Linville, 94, of Overland Park, KS, died peacefully during the dreams of her sleep early morning on Saturday, June 17, 2023. Yet, she has eternal life in her strong faith as well as in the hearts of all she leaves behind, her family, friends, former students, and more.
Elizabeth or Liz was born on August 11, 1928, to Edna and Roy David in Winfield, KS. After graduating from Winfield High School, she achieved a bachelor’s degree in home economics at Kansas State University. While at K-State she met the love of her life, Tom Linville, and they married. Their first-born child, Sandra, was born in Manhattan, KS, and then the family of three moved to St. Mary’s where Tom started his high school vocational agriculture teaching career. They then moved to Sublette, KS, where he taught until making a transition to farming in Holcomb, KS, where they lived in a small house on the prairie.
Elizabeth and Tom went on to have three more children, Randy, Nancie and Stan and celebrated 40 years together before Tom died on December 23, 1991.
Elizabeth was predeceased by her parents, beloved husband Tom, brothers Glen and Walter David, sister Barbara Montague, grandson Joshua Linville-Engler and son-in-law Verlyn Engler. She is survived by sister JoanDrake, son Stan Linville, daughter-in-law Jill, granddaughter Jenny Trupka (Tristan), grandson GarrettLinville (Ashley), daughter Nancie Linville-Engler, grandson Ben Linville-Engler (Gabriella), grandson MattLinville-Engler (Emilia), son Randy Linville, daughter-in-law Deb, granddaughter Grace Linville, grandson JakeLinville, and daughter Sandra Linville-Thomas, son-in-law David Thomas and granddaughter Claire Thomas (Joe Sliter). She is also survived by eight great-grandchildren, Harper, Kamdyn, Brecken, Drake, Emma, Emerson, Wilder and Frankie.
Updated Service Day/Time: Services will be held at Wesley Covenant Chapel at the Resurrection church’s Leawood campus at 13720 Roe Ave., Leawood, KS, on Friday, August 25, 2023 at 11:00 am. The service will be live-streamed at www.cor.org/memorialsonline. A reception will be held in the Student Center will follow the service. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the National 4H Council in honor of Elizabeth. For more information go to https://4-h.org/support/ways-to-give/. A graveside service will be conducted in Garden City, KS, at a later date.
Elizabeth lived a full and productive life. Being productive was important to her and she brought focused dedication to all she did. All those paying attention could see her reliable commitment and strength. She was the epitome of the following quote by Dr. Maria Nemeth: “Success is consistently doing what you said you would do with clarity, focus, ease, and grace. Success, seen this way, is an inside job. You don’t compare yourself to anyone else. You don’t even look at whether what you’re doing is big or small. You look instead at the quality of your action and of your experience.”
She did this as an elementary school teacher, school board president, 4-H advisor for local and state fairs, farm extension agent, manager of a family life on a farm, seamstress, gardener, arborist, family cook, and very importantly being a full partner in the family farm and a mom. She even helped design the family home with an architect and created a beautiful yet very functional homethat the family enjoyed after leaving the small house on the prairie. She and Tom also enjoyed playing bridge and square dancing with friends. She never lacked purpose, community and enjoyment in her life.
Later in life after Tom died, she was able to travel in an RV with her new partner, Don Ploger. She’d always wanted to travel more but operating a farm made that difficult. She so enjoyed new adventures in the RV and watching sunrises and sunsets at beaches. Again, with her organizational skills, she packed the RV to perfection.
As a lifelong Methodist, she also was dedicated to service,and she headed up organizing hospitality for family and guests after funeral services at the Garden City Methodist church. She had appreciated what the committee had done for the family after Tom’s funeral service that she wanted to give back. Of course, her honed organizational and culinary skills made her a natural for this act of service.
When Elizabeth was 80, she chose to move to Overland Park, KS, to be closer to family. While living at the Tallgrass community, she enjoyed a beautiful and comfortable apartment in a parklike setting with just enough area around her patio to do a little gardening and room in her apartment to nurture her houseplants. She also dabbled in a little interior decorating as she enhanced her apartment. She also had more time for her sewing.That’s how she expressed her creative and artistic nature. She participated in the Osher Lifelong Learning program, the nature club at Tallgrass and the ResidentialCommittee. She also became a Kansas City Chiefs fan and Kansas City Star reader. She loved keeping up with current events. That included reading the Garden City Telegram online to keep up with her former community. Elizabeth loved keeping up with technology and her iPad and iPhone were important to her. Her travels continued with family reunions in Colorado and group trips sponsored at Tallgrass with friends. She also was kept busy with her growing family in Kansas, Colorado, California and Massachusetts.
And that was what was most important to Elizabeth. She loved participating in her children’s and grandchildren’slives. She loved sharing her hospitality as long as she could. Even when life became ever more challenging, she worked hard to keep a positive outlook and sense of humor. Her love and example will live forever in our hearts.
When her family celebrated her 90th birthday, she gave everyone a special wooden sign. It featured a bright yellow sunflower on a chalkboard background with “You are my sunshine.” printed on it. It seemed as if it was our first day of school and she was beginning the school year with an affirmation. So, we will always have that song in our hearts. She is our sunshine, even when skies are grey. We knew she loved us and she knew we loved her. And we will always remember that … and her smile.