Connie Engle Perkins died Friday May 20, 2022 in Olathe, KS. She is survived by her husband, Sam G. Perkins, her best friend and partner in life. Connie and Sam were married for 65 years, living in Olathe and Longboat Key, FL.
She was born March 9, 1934 and spent her childhood with parents Lester E. Engle and Lettie Engle, first on their farm near Abilene, KS and later in the towns of Abilene and Salina.
She graduated from Stephens College, Columbia, MO with combined undergraduate and Associate of Arts degrees. After a short stint working in fashion design she returned to Kansas to attend the University of Kansas where she received her degree in Art Education.
Connie and Sam met through college friends and were married June 2, 1957. In 1958 she started a career by establishing the original art education curriculum for the Olathe school system teaching in various capacities for a total of twelve years. The couple lived in a “Navy Hill” duplex in Olathe until building their “dream home” on Lennox Drive in 1965, exercising her passion for gardening, landscaping and the selection and placing of decorative rocks and boulders. She lived there until Nov 1st, 2021 when she and Sam moved to Cedar Lake Village in Olathe.
In the Olathe community, Connie served as a founder and president of Olathe Junior Service League. She and Sam were member of Carriage Club until Sam’s retirement and were founding members of Shadow Glen Golf Club, where they remained social members until November of 2021.
Art was an important part of her life, first as a student and creator, then as a teacher, a collector and an involved supporter of many museums and galleries. With the Nelson-Atkins Museum, Connie was a member of “Friends of Art” and later “Society of Fellows” and was a docent for 35 years, serving a term as chairman of the Docent Committee.
Connie and Sam were long term supporters of Olathe Hospital (Olathe Health Systems), resulting in the naming of the Sam and Connie Perkins Entrance and Lobby. The Spencer Museum at the University of Kansas has similarly acknowledged their support by naming the Sam and Connie Perkins Central Court.
Connie and Sam were avid travelers, Together they took multiple trips to all seven continents visiting over 202 countries. Many travels emphasized art and architecture while others were oriented toward adventure travel, seeking animals and birds in their native habitat. Connie achieved a life time goal of seeing all 19 species of penguins, in colonies spanning 4 continents.
Following Sam’s retirement as president of Bank IV Kansas City in 1991, Connie and Sam spent the winter months in Longboat Key, FL, enjoying views of Sarasota Bay and the Gulf of Mexico from their condominium second home.
Private Burial at Pleasant Valley Cemetery in Overland Park. No services are planned. Memorial contributions may be made to University of Kansas Endowment Association for the Spencer Museum P.O. Box 928, Lawrence, KS 66044 or Olathe Health Services Charitable Foundation, 20375 W. 151st St. Olathe, KS 66061
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