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William "Bill" Thomas Newkirk

April 16, 1956 ~ November 9, 2021 (age 65)



William”Bill” Thomas Newkirk II, 65, passed suddenly Tuesday, November 9, 2021.

A Celebration of Life Service will be held on Tuesday, November 16th, 2021 a the First United Methodist Church at 10:00am. Visitation will be Monday the 15th at Webb & Rodrick Chapel, 5:00-7:00pm. Memorials may be left to First United Methodist Church in Bill’s name, or to the charity of your choice.


Bill  was a lifelong resident of Independence, born April 16, 1956 to the late Jack L. Newkirk and the late Lorraine “Sammy” Newkirk. He graduated from Independence High School in 1974 and then continued his education to ICC and Washburn University graduating with a bachelor’s in business.  While there he met the love of his life, Karen Lynn (Heald) Newkirk, and they married on July 28th, 1979.  Bill was a dedicated independent insurance agent and owner for more than 43 years.


Bill was active in his community. He was a lifelong member of the First United Methodist Church, with over two decades of teaching the Seekers Sunday School class, serving on numerous committees, and playing brass music Christmas Eve for many years. He also served many community organizations including Jaycees, Boys Home Board and the school board.

Bill had a passion for music, both as a musician and overall music lover. His appreciation of music included many styles from classical to jazz and especially rock and roll. He inspired a love for loud stereos, concerts and brass performances with his children and family. He founded The Kuzzins Brass, a family brass quintet, and played trombone in many other groups through the years. He looked forward to and loved every practice and performance the Kuzzins had.

He also loved the outdoors, especially time at the lake, boating, fishing, hunting, or floating. He loved spending time by the fire, especially with a grandchild on his lap.


Bill will be truly missed by many, especially his family. He was a loving husband, brother, father and grandad. He was preceded in death by his father and mother Jack and Lorraine Newkirk of Independence and by his sister Martha Jane (Newkirk) Burgett. Surviving is his wife of 42 years, Karen Newkirk of Independence, son Philip Newkirk (Heather) of Neodesha, daughter Sarah (Newkirk) Matthews (Blake) of Broken Arrow, OK, brother Jonathan Newkirk (Carol) of Osawotomie, brother-in-law John Burgett, four grandchildren, Nora, Stella, Ellie and Jack, and much loved nephews, niece, aunts, uncles, and cousins.



To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of William "Bill" Thomas Newkirk, please visit our floral store.

Memorial Tree
A Memorial Tree was planted for William "Bill"

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November 15, 2021

5:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Webb Rodrick Chapel
306 W Main
Independence, KS 67301

Funeral Service
November 16, 2021

10:00 AM
First Methodist Church
200 S. Penn
Independence, KS 67301

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