Victoria Haney, age 75, of Olathe, Kansas passed away peacefully on January 23, 2020 at Olathe Medical Center.
Victoria Ann Harper was born June 9, 1944 at St. Mary’s Hospital in Columbus, Nebraska. She was the youngest of two children born to James Richard Harper and Mary (Zak) Harper. She grew up a happy little girl on Elm Street in the proud Czechoslovakian community of Clarkson, Nebraska. Her sister, Mary Jeanne was 15-years older and married at 21, having Victoria as her flower girl. Mary Jeanne then had two children, so Victoria was an aunt by age 7.
Vicki, as she was preferably known, graduated Salutatorian from Clarkson High School in 1962 with accolades in band, chorus, cheerleading, plays, reporting, and student government. As a child, she learned to play the piano and later would often enrich her home with the ragtime compositions of Scott Joplin.
Following high school, she spread her wings and in 1962 enrolled at the Clarkson School of Nursing in Omaha. She made lifelong friends there and graduated with her nursing diploma. She began her career as a registered nurse by quickly passing her state board exam then working at Clarkson Hospital on the evening shift. It was in Omaha where she met Frank Nelson Allen and began dating him. They were married in Clarkson, Nebraska in 1966 and began their married life in Kansas City, Missouri. Shortly thereafter they moved to Metairie, Louisiana where they lived it up amongst the Cajun and Mardi Gras culture of the Big Easy. In 1968 she gave birth to Neil and later to Patricia in 1971. She was a doting mother and stepped away from her nursing career to become a full-time homemaker.
Her mother, Mary, passed away in 1969 shortly after Neil was born. Her father remarried soon thereafter. Vicki took her family annually to visit him and her new stepmother Anne. They often stayed in her childhood home while visiting during the local summer Czech Festival in Clarkson. She was well-known in that community, attending most of her high school reunions and staying tight with her childhood friends and their families.
The four Allens moved back to Kansas City, Missouri in 1975 to Sunny Hills Apartments. There they lived it up with most of the resident families of the then professional hockey team, the Kansas City Scouts. They soon had a home custom built in Olathe, Kansas on Butterfield Place. There they made their home in that blossoming suburban community. She taught her daughter piano and was a active Brownie and Girl Scout leader. She taught her son how to cook and how to make lemonade when life gives you lemons. Mostly, she taught their children how to be honest, self-reliant, and empathetic people from modeling those traits throughout her life. In 1979, Vicki and Nelson amicably divorced. She re-certified her nursing license and went to work for Olathe Medical Center. She handled being the primary parent with grace and strength. She tirelessly worked and nurtured her children to give them the best possible futures; even taking them on many summer vacations from the Black Hills to the Bahamas. She was an avid reader and highly valued education, open-mindedness, and spelling.
In 1988, she met a local guy at a singles dance, Thomas Bieszczat, and they married. They traveled the Caribbean and spent time with their families. Tom fell ill with complications from diabetes and passed away in 1992. She took extraordinary care of him at home until his passing, again exemplifying the fortitude, patience, and devotion it takes to be a spouse through better and worse, and a nurse both on and off the clock.
She remained widowed for several years until one day in 1998 a strapping handyman came knocking on her door. She hired him to do some renovations and he soon pursued her hand. She married Pete Richard Haney on June 6th, 2000 in Reno, Nevada, happily together nearly 20 years. She had two children (Neil & Tricia) and Pete had eight (Scott, Debra, Mike, Eric, Monica, Jeff, Kim, & Veronica). From having multiplied her adult children by five, she is survived by 13 grandchildren and 12 great grandchildren. She and Pete often hosted Christmas Day breakfasts in their home where they cooked for a small army of relatives. They also created fond memories by occasionally taking some of their grandchildren fishing at nearby Cedar Lake.
Vicki enjoyed sarcastic humor and sports in her leisure time. She daily read the newspapers, notably the comics: Far Side, Calvin & Hobbes, and Pearls Before Swine. She would also frequently quote the nuttiness of George Carlin, one of her favorite comedians. She watched nearly all local games to root for the home teams whether they be Royals, Chiefs, Jayhawks, or Wildcats. Being originally from Nebraska, she grew up a Cornhusker, however, her hometown loyalty soon shifted to Kansas and Kansas City home teams.
Throughout her life, Vicki fostered many pets. At a young age, she owned a parakeet that was trained to fly up to her room in the mornings and softly peck on her eyelids until they opened. She and her children took care of many cats, hamsters, birds, turtles, snakes, frogs, and fish. She and Pete doted on their dogs, particularly their Shih Tzus, Daisy and Shasta.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to Wayside Waif Animal Shelter.
Vicki retired from nursing in 2010 after 35 years of nursing at Olathe Medical Center, mostly in orthopedics and oncology. Over the years, she made lots of work friends while she proudly took care of many local residents either nursing them back to health or easing their pain and suffering. In retirement, she spent most of her time with Pete making memories and having laughs. She will be remembered and missed as a wife, a mother, a grandmother, and/or a friend by all who survive her. Godspeed Vicki...
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