Tony Allen O’Brate, long-time former resident of Syracuse, passed away at age 86 on August 27, 2018 in Topeka, Kansas. Tony was born September 27, 1931 in Enid, Oklahoma, son of Merrill and Bessie O’Brate. Tony and Joan Cook were married December 27, 1953 in Garden City, Kansas.
Tony graduated from Syracuse High School and then attended Southwestern College in Winfield, Kansas. Later he received his BA and MA degrees from Adams State College in Alamosa, Colorado. He was a US Army veteran.
Tony retired from teaching elementary school after 27 years in 1992. He owned and operated the Syracuse Floral for many years.
Tony was known for his beautiful yard and flower garden. He loved playing the piano and organ for Syracuse United Methodist Church. He was great at baking bread, pies, and cinnamon rolls which everyone enjoyed. After moving to Topeka in 2001, Tony and Joan were babysitters for their youngest grandson, Hunter.
Tony was preceded in death by his wife, Joan, his parents, and his brother, Bill. He is survived by his sister, Helen Lee Cook, and by his four children, Jennifer (Keith) Roberts of Woodbridge, Virginia, Greg (Tammy Runnebaum) and Joellyn of Topeka, and Martin (Tracie) of Auburn, Kansas. There are eight grandchildren: Jason (Andrea) and Michael Roberts, Philip (Leslie), Matthew (Nicole), and Alaina O’Brate (Bryce Korf), and Brandon, Brian, and Hunter O’Brate. There are ten great-grandchildren.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Syracuse First United Methodist Church Scholarship Fund (Box 1409, Syracuse, KS 67878).
A memorial service for both Tony and Joan will be at the Syracuse United Methodist Church, September 8 at 11:00am MT.
Arrangements are made by Dove Cremation, Topeka, KS, and Fellers Funeral Home, Syracuse, Kansas. tel:620-384-5100
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