Barbara Jean Emmett Maxwell
Barbara Jean Emmett Maxwell, 88, Salina, died Wednesday, February 23, 2011, at Salina Regional Health Center after a brief illness.
Mrs. Maxwell was born to Swedish immigrants Cecil and Signe Emmett on November 11, 1922, in Kendrick, Idaho. She graduated from the University of Idaho School of Education in 1944. She immediately entered the military service as a physical therapist, serving hospitals in Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Japan. Following World War II, Barbara worked in a hospital in Sapporo, Hokkaido, Japan where she met Private Jack C. Maxwell. The couple married March 30, 1947. They returned to Lawrence, Kansas where both attended and graduated from the University of Kansas Law School and raised their family. Barbara passed the Kansas Bar exam in 1951 and earned a Masters of Education in 1963. She taught in the Lawrence Public Schools for 30 years, retiring in 1987. Barbara was instrumental in organizing a competitive high school girls’ athletics program at Lawrence High School as well as throughout northeastern Kansas prior to passage of the Title IX education initiative. She was active in numerous education and civic organizations. She was a member of St. John’s Catholic Church in Lawrence.
Mrs. Maxwell was predeceased by her husband, Jack, in 1980, and her son, Jack C. Maxwell, Jr. in 2004.
Survivors include one son, Scott Richard Maxwell, Garden City; two daughters, Karen Maxwell Kessler, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and her husband Alan; Kristin Maxwell Gunn, Salina, and her husband John; daughters-in-law Lisa Maxwell, Garden City, and Darel Maxwell, Ulysses; eight grandchildren: Elizabeth Kessler and husband Geoff Paine; Laura Seaton; Brian Kessler; Eleanor Witt and husband Kevin; Jack Maxwell III; Mary Maxwell; Eric Maxwell; Carson Maxwell; and three great grandchildren, Charlotte Paine, Gregory Witt, and Natalie Witt.
A private family memorial service will be held, the Reverend Doug McHenry, First Covenant Church, officiating. Cremation has been chosen.
The family suggests memorials to the Women’s Athletic Program, care of Lawrence High School, Lawrence, Kansas, or to Salina Presbyterian Manor.