Robert Smith Bader, 93, of Neosho Falls, Kan., passed away Saturday, August 4, 2018, at the Life Care Center in Burlington, Kan.
A memorial graveside service will be held 11:00 a.m. Saturday, September 8, at the LeRoy Cemetery shelter house. Inurnment will be in LeRoy Cemetery.
Robert was born June 18, 1925, in Falls City, Neb., the son of Ray J. and Grace K. (King) Bader. He grew up in Falls City and spent summers in LeRoy. He graduated from Falls City High School in 1943 and he then enlisted in the United States Navy. He served during World War II aboard the USS St. George which participated in the battle of Okinawa.
Following the war, he earned a B.S. Degree in Geology from Kansas State University in 1949, and a Ph.D. in Paleozoology in 1954 from the University of Chicago. He was a Professor at the University of Florida and the University of Illinois (Champaign-Urbana). Robert served as Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and Professor of Biology from 1968-1983, and as Research Professor 1983-1985 at the University of Missouri - St. Louis.
Robert and Virginia “Sue” (Baertch) Bader were married on August 22, 1948 and became the parents of four sons. They were later divorced.
Robert loved Kansas and Kansas History. He wrote three books on Kansas history: The Great Kansas Bond Scandal, Prohibition in Kansas: A History, and Hayseeds, Moralizers and Methodists: The Twentieth-Century Image of Kansas. He then served in various positions with the Department of History at the University of Kansas and as an Adjunct Professor of History at Kansas State University and Emporia State University. He received the Edgar Langsdorf Award for Excellence in Historical Writing in 1985. He also wrote and published A Second Look: Reading the Bible Again for the First Time in 1988.
On March 13, 1981, he and Myra Joan (Larson) Bader were married. She lives at their home south of LeRoy. Also surviving are Robert’s sons, Douglas Bader (Gail) of Alton, Ill., Jonathan Bader (Ann) of De Forest, Wis., Eric Bader (Valerie) of Columbia, and Joel Bader (Rebecca) of Columbia; nine grandchildren, Christina Bader, Emma Ageneau, Mira Bader, Shireen Bader, Sarah Deering-Cotillier, Allison Bader, Reece Bader, Olivia Bader and Sophia Bader; six great-grandchildren, Eruch, River, Rosalie, Alijah, Jada, and Treyson; his sister, Hellen Joan (Bader) Freeman of Leroy, Kan.; nephew, Jeff Freeman; niece, Jennifer Freeman; and other relatives and friends.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Kansas Historical Society or the Helping Hands Humane Society in Topeka and may be sent in care of Jones Funeral Home, PO Box 277, Burlington, Kan. 66839.