Ted Sipe 1940-2024
Theodore Ray Sipe, loving husband, father, grandfather, brother and friend passed away Saturday, Feb. 10, 2024, at age 83 in Topeka, surrounded by his devoted family.
Son of Fred Dean Sipe and Marjorie Jones Sipe, Ted was born Dec. 6, 1940 in Tonkawa, Okla. He graduated from Tonkawa High School in 1958 and then from Central State University in Edmond, Okla., in 1964 with a bachelor’s degree in education. He then began his life-long career as an educational leader.
Ted was a teacher and coach for elementary and junior high students in Wichita and Chanute for eight years before earning his master’s degree in elementary education in 1972. He held Elementary Principal positions at Lincoln and Hutton-Roosevelt Elementary schools in Chanute before moving to Holton in 1982 to become elementary principal at Colorado/Central Elementary School and high school golf coach retiring in 1995. Ted was persuaded to repeat his administrative role for school year 1996-1997 to help out the district.
Ted was a gentle giant among school administrators and was a strong advocate for not only supporting all students, but his staff as well. In 1994 he was presented with the General Education Administrator of the Year award from the Kansas Association of Special Education Administrators for his commitment in providing a school environment where all students benefit, including those with disabilities.
Ted was an avid sports fan and never found a sport he would not try including racquetball, tennis, skiing, bowling, softball and his greatest pleasure, golf. Many of his dearest friendships were established on the golf course and in his later years he would always want to “go hit some.” If you asked him, he would tell you about his three “holes in one.” He also enjoyed card games, especially cribbage.
In his retirement years, he found great pleasure in working at the golf course and bartending. He even found some time to work as assistant slot supervisor at Harrah’s Prairie Band Casino for a few years.
Ted is survived by his wife, Susan Crain Sipe, of Topeka, with whom he shared 40 years of marriage; his children: Kimberly Sipe Bradford (Paul), Andover, Kristin Sipe Hess (Don), Frontenac, Kyle Dean Sipe (Mackenzie), Hoyt, and Timothy Ray Sipe (Elizabeth), Lawrence; a brother, Tom Sipe (Pat), Ponca City, Okla.; his grandchildren: Kaedy Hess, Denver, Colo., Mitchell Hess, Frontenac, Karlyn Bradford, Andover, Ethan Hess, Olathe, Connor Bradford, Kansas City, Mo., McKenzie Sipe and Carson Sipe, both of Lawrence, and Averie Sipe and Grayson Sipe, both of Hoyt. Ted is also survived by loving brothers and sisters-in-law, nieces, nephews, cousins and many devoted friends. Ted was preceded in death by his father, mother, brother Fred Dean Sipe and infant granddaughter Kelsey Elyse Bradford.
A mass will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 17 at St. Dominic Catholic Church in Holton. A Celebration of Life to greet family and friends is scheduled immediately following the mass, until 3 p.m., at Holton Country Club. Ted will be cremated and a private inurnment will be held at a later date.
Ted lived with Parkinson’s disease for the last 12 years of his life. He battled the disease with the most amazing grace, bravery and strength. He lived everyday with positivity and determination not to let the disease keep him from doing the things he loved.
A special thanks goes to Holton Hospice and Homestead of Topeka for the exceptional care Ted received. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to HCH Hospice or Holton Country Club, sent in care of Mercer Funeral Home, P.O. Box 270, Holton, KS 66436. To leave a special message for the family, please visit www.mercerfuneralhomes.com