Rosemary E. (Urbanek) Rathbun

August 17, 1941 ~ January 10, 2024 (age 82) 82 Years Old

Rosemary Rathbun Obituary


  Rosemary E. Rathbun, 82, passed away January 10, 2024 in Ellsworth, KS. This wonderful woman came into the world on August 17, 1941, to Benjamin and Margaret (Schroeder) Urbanek. Being the first born, she learned a lot of life skills wrangling five brothers and two little sisters. She attended Liberty, a one-room schoolhouse near the Lincoln family farm from first to eighth grade and then transferred to Ellsworth High School, graduating in 1959. After high school, she took floral design classes in Colorado and worked at her aunt Goldie and uncle George Jelinek’s flower shop in Ellsworth. Her single days ended when she met Tom Rathbun. They married on December 27, 1961 and had five children. The couple lived on a farm south of Ellsworth. Rosemary always had a little something extra and showed it when she started entering tractor pulling contests. Rosemary and her White tractor were a force to be reckoned with from 1977 to 1979. In 1983, she became a single mom and moved to Colby, KS to pursue a career in nursing. She took this challenge head-on and earned her nursing degree. She worked at the Ellsworth and Lincoln hospitals for many years. People would often share stories of the wonderful kindness and care patients and loved ones received from nurse Rosemary. She was a lifetime member of St. Bernard’s Catholic Church of Ellsworth.

  Rosemary was preceded in death by her parents; and brothers, James, Joseph, Donald, David and Gary Urbanek. She is survived by her sisters, Theresa (Les) Richards and Valerie (Gail) Urbanek; children, Marilee Nily of Louisville, KY, Corinne Dible of Salina, KS, Sherri (Dennis) Yoder of Spring Valley, MN, Sheldon (Brenda) Rathbun of Ellsworth, and Lawanda (Dave) Woods of Ellsworth; 12 grandchildren and eight great grandchildren; many nieces and nephews; as well as extended family and friends.

  A memorial mass service will be held at 11:00 a.m., Friday, January 26, 2024 at St. Bernard’s Catholic Church.

  Memorial contributions can be made to the Good Samaritan Society of Ellsworth, c/o, Parsons Funeral Home, PO Box 45, Ellsworth, KS 67439.

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Memorial Mass
January 26, 2024

11:00 AM
St. Bernard's Catholic Church
911 N. Kansas Ave
Ellsworth, KS 67439

Video is available for this event


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