Gloria died late Saturday evening on March 14, 2020, at the home of her daughter Denise Humphrey and son-in-law Jerry Humphrey. Gloria had been battling pancreatic cancer, and God took her gently and peacefully. Gloria is preceded in death by her husband of 46 years and the love of her life, Francis “Dean” Lupkey, by her sister Alice O’Bryan Umphress and her godmothers Dorothy Gallagher and Mary Louise Gallagher. Gloria leaves behind her daughter Denise Humphrey and son-in-law Jerry Humphrey of Olathe, KS, her son Dru Lupkey and daughter-in-law Kristi Lupkey of Frisco, TX, and her stepson Cameron Lupkey and his wife Jan Lupkey of Jefferson City, MO. She also leaves behind her beloved granddaughters Jessica Gilson, Olathe, KS, and Alayna Humphrey, DeSoto, KS, her sister Henrietta Anderson Hiott of Montgomery TX, and many nieces, nephews, step-grandchildren and step-great-grandchildren.
Gloria was born April 16, 1937, in Kansas City, MO to Juan Diaz and Concepcion Ortiz Diaz. Sadly Gloria’s father passed away when she was 1 month old, and her mother passed away when she was two years of age. The three girls, Henrietta, Alice, and Gloria remained in their grandmother Micaela Lara’s care for a time along with a young girl named Carmen Hernandez, whom the three considered to be a sister. All four of the girls were later taken to the St. Joseph Orphan Girls’ Home in Kansas City, and raised by the nuns. During this time Gloria attended Redemptorist Catholic School, and the Diaz girls remained under the care of the Catholic Diocese until they aged out.
After leaving the care of the nuns, she was taken in by Carmen who was a young adult. In Gloria’s words “If it hadn’t been for Carmen, I had nowhere to go, but she took me in.” Gloria was hired by Stinson Mag, a prominent law firm in Kansas City. She married Delbert Crouse in 1955 and gave birth to her daughter Denise in 1960. Gloria and Delbert later divorced. Gloria became involved in politics and met Francis Dean Lupkey at a political event. For Dean, it was instant love. Dean won her heart and made her his wife in May of 1968 and the couple, along with Denise resided in Liberty, MO. The family moved to Blue Springs MO and welcomed Fredrick “Dru” Lupkey in May of 1971.
Gloria wore many hats in her lifetime. Legal Secretary, Radio Station Owner/CEO, Executive Assistant, Real Estate Agent, and the most sacred of occupations, devoted wife, loving mother, beloved grandmother, sister, and a good friend to many. Gloria had a way about her that was so sweet and genuine. To know Gloria was to love her. During her lifetime Gloria remained a faithful servant of God attending church with her husband and family.
In the later retirement years, Gloria and Dean lived in many places and everywhere they went they touched people’s hearts. They made wonderful friends and adopted neighbors as family members. Toward the end of Dean’s life, Gloria cared for him in the home for many years as his health declined. She was extremely devoted to Dean and would not leave his side. Gloria’s beloved husband Dean passed away in January 2015.
Gloria moved to Montgomery TX in 2016 to be close to her sister Henrie, and her best friend Annette Combest, where she resided until her diagnosis of pancreatic cancer in September 2019. In October, Gloria moved to Olathe KS to stay with her daughter Denise while she fought this ugly cancer with chemotherapy at Kansas University Cancer Center. Sadly, this was a fight she did not win. Gloria entered hospice care with Catholic Communities Hospice and was able to stay in the home of her daughter Denise until the time of her death. She received wonderful, loving care from the people of hospice. During this time she was blessed that so many family and friends came to visit her. She expressed how loved she felt.
At approximately 10:20 pm, March 14, 2020, the good Lord took Gloria to be with him, Jesus, and all the angels and saints. She was taken very gently, very peacefully, as she was surrounded by her daughter Denise holding her hand, her granddaughter Alayna, speaking softly to her, her son-in-law Jerry and granddaughter Jessica close by.
A memorial funeral mass will take place in the future when the Covid-19 virus no longer poses a threat to loved ones to travel and to be in close contact with one another. After the funeral, per her wishes, Gloria’s remains will be placed in the columbarium at Dallas Fort Worth National Cemetery with Dean’s, in a spousal niche.
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