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Linn County News

Published July 19, 2023


Glen Robert "Bob" Brownback, age 92, of Garnett, Kan., formerly of Parker, Kan., passed away on Tuesday, July 11, 2023, at the Rock Creek Care Home in Ottawa, Kan.

Bob was born on Feb. 3, 1931, on a farm near Harris, Kan. He was the third of four children born to Orville Glen and Leora M. (Ellington) Brownback. Bob's family moved to a farm near Centerville in 1932. Bob graduated from Parker High School in 1948. The official records may not have a picture of Bob as "the" Kansas farmer, but that may be appropriate if it did. He may have struggled to remember a birthday, but he could always recount the crop they raised in whatever year was being discussed. According to family records, Bob first drove a tractor at the age of nine. Visitors to the Parker Museum can search for a newspaper article telling of the Brownback boys (Bob and Billy) breaking a tractor in half.

On Oct. 1, 1950, Bob was united in marriage to Nancy Cowden at the First Presbyterian Church in Osawatomie, Kan. Their union was blessed with four children, Mary, Alan, Sam, and Jim. Bob and Nancy made their home on their farm east of Parker in 1953. Bob was a lifelong farmer and he only left the farm under duress when he was no longer able to get on to the tractor or the combine. They moved to Garnett in 2019 and Bob found joy in watching the birds and squirrels in the yard in town. In his free time, Bob enjoyed watching any John Wayne movie or every single episode of Gunsmoke. On the farm he loved his John Deere tractors, even though he thought the green paint was too expensive.

Bob was generous with his time away from the farm, serving on local boards, including the Parker and Prairie View School Boards, and the American State Bank board, Osawatomie. He loved their opportunities to travel. He especially enjoyed Las Vegas, cruises, and their trips traveling to Russia, Australia, New Zealand, England, Ireland, Iceland, and Egypt. Bob instilled the value of an education in his family and was proud of the generations of his family that pursued higher education. His work ethic will be remembered by all who knew him, it was said that he would have worked in the nursing home, if they would have allowed it. He took pride in his farming operation, tending to his land and equipment constantly. Throughout his life, he faced many challenges with his health, in spite of the challenges he was always a fighter. In the end Bob's dementia was a challenge for the last few years of his life, but his love of his family and wanting to talk farming still remained.

He was preceded in death by his parents; brother, Bill Brownback, and wife, Charlene; grandson, Scott Hazard; son-in-law, Ray Bakker; great-granddaughter, Amelie Brownback; and two brothers-in-law, Clayton Hodgson, and Bill Cowden.

Bob is survived by his wife of 72 years, Nancy Brownback, of the home; his children and their families, Mary Jewett and husband, Mike of Mesa, Ariz., Alan and wife, Nancy of Lyndon, Kan., Sam and wife, Mary of Topeka, Kan., and Jim and wife, Vickie of Parker, Kan.; 19 grandchildren; and 40 great-grandchildren (with more on the way).

Memorial services are planned for 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, July 15, 2023, at the Parker United Methodist Church, 403 W. Kimball, Parker, Kan. Bob's family will greet friends from 6 to 8 p.m. on Friday evening at the Feuerborn Family Funeral Service Chapel in Garnett, Kan. In lieu of flowers, Bob's family encourages taking a friend to lunch in honor of Bob. Condolences to the family may be left at


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Ann Johnson ~ 09-14-1943 to 05-16-2024


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