Marion Marcus Wise, 91, of Chanute, KS passed away on Friday, August 2, 2019. He was born November 29, 1927 on a farm in Marionville, MO, the son of W.T. and Eunice (Wallace) Wise. His family moved to Neodesha, Kansas, when Marion was 9, and then at age 11, they moved to Chanute, where he was raised.
When Marion was in high school, his love of trains led him to a job with the Santa Fe Railroad, where he “tended the engines,” getting them ready for their next run. He received his draft notice, but was allowed to finish high school, due to his good grades. Marion graduated from Chanute High School in 1946, and after testing the Army, he decided the Marines was more to his calling. He served at Camp Pendleton in San Diego, CA and was discharged in 1948. He immediately signed up for the Marine Reserves and served until 1951, remaining stateside. He had suffered a badly broken leg and ankle while performing his firefighting duties, which prevented him from being deployed to Korea.
Marion married JoAnn Cox on November 6, 1949 at the First Christian Church in Chanute. They made their home in Chanute, where they raised four children and shared 69 years together. The Santa Fe Railroad was glad to have him return from the Marines, and so his lifelong career with the railroad began. He was given the nickname “Buddy,” and he loved riding the freight trains for many years. When the Santa Fe merged with Burlington Northern, him and his co-workers were all offered buyouts. He held out as long as possible, finally retiring in 1988.
Marion enjoyed retirement, because he had plenty of time to do all the things he loved. Every trip involved either steam engine shows, air shows, or going to see the restored steam locomotives. While at home, his favorite pastime was “tinkering” in his shop with wood or metal and watching old westerns and war movies on TV. He was well known around Chanute, that he could help you fix just about anything, and loved it when people stopped by to “shoot the breeze,” or take pictures and ask questions about his antique steam engines and threshing machine.
Marion was a member of the First Christian Church in Chanute, and the SMART Transportation Division Alumni Association. He loved his family dearly and will be greatly missed.
Marion is survived by his wife, JoAnn, of the home; and children: Cliff (Rhonda) of Garnett, KS, Dee Ann Craig (Kenneth) of Washburn, MO, Linda Dieker (John) of Olpe, KS; brother, Charles Wise of Muskegon, MI; grandchildren, Melissa Wise, Angie (Joe) Pingley, Connor A. Wise, Eric Wise, Michael (Cassie) Dieker, JoAnna Dieker; great-grandchildren: Jake & Layla Pingley, Connor M. Wise, Kauffman and Ace Dieker, and many loving nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents and a son, John M. Wise in 2010.
The family will greet friends this evening, August 6, 2019 from 6-8 pm at Countryside Funeral Home Gibson Chapel at 16 N. Forest in Chanute, KS. Funeral Service will be on Wednesday, August 7, 2019 at 1:30 pm at the funeral home. Burial will follow at Memorial Park Cemetery in Chanute, KS. Online condolences may be left at: www.countrysidefh.com
The family suggests memorials to be made to First Christian Church God’s Food Pantry and may be mailed to the funeral home.
Arrangements have been entrusted to Countryside Funeral Home, 16 N. Forest, Chanute, KS 66720.