Velda J. Root, 84, of Manhattan passed away on Nov. 8, 2020, at the Good Shepherd Hospice House in Manhattan.
Velda Jean Root was born at a farmhouse near Elmo, Kansas, on Dec. 30, 1935, the daughter of Henry And Edna (Thischauser) Reiff. She attended the rural one-room Morley grade school before Dickinson County Community High School of Chapman where she graduated in 1953.
She received her 60-hour teaching certificate from Kansas State University in 1955 then completed her Elementary Education degree from Kansas State University in 1958. She taught in elementary schools in Kansas for 8 years and substituted for another 9 years. Moving to Manhattan in 1984, she was employed by Manhattan Christian College full-time for 18 years in the Business Office and for 9 years part-time in the Institutional Advancement Department.
She was a valued employee and much loved by the staff and student body.
On Sept 4, 1957, Velda married Norman E. Root at the New Basil Church south of Abilene near Elmo, KS. Together they lived in Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa, and Missouri while raising their three sons.
Velda was deeply devoted to her family. She took annual family pop-up camper trips to Colorado, and a memorable trip to the Kwajalein Atoll in the Marshall Islands to see her eldest son Monty. Christmas was a particularly important holiday to her. She loved decorating, baking treats, playing games with her family, and spending time around the tree. Christian faith was a significant and valued aspect of her life, providing many good friends and much comfort. She was a member of the University Christian Church of Manhattan.
Velda enjoyed working in her yard, reading, fishing, and playing games with her family. She enjoyed college sports, particularly Kansas State basketball, often entertaining her grandchildren by loudly talking to the television and criticizing any calls against the Wildcats.
Velda is survived by sons Monty Root of Lehigh, KS, Brian (Ann) of Manhattan, KS, Loren (Nicole) of Manhattan KS, two brothers Don Reiff of Hope, KS, and Duane Reiff of Topeka, KS, grandchildren Shelby, Elora, Conall, Kaden and Hailee.
Velda is preceded in death by her husband, parents and sister Clarene Anderson.
Cremation with a future memorial service at a time and date as the global pandemic will allow is planned.
Online condolences may be left for the family through the funeral home website at www.irvinparkview.com.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Manhattan Christian College.