Gavona Jean Michaels Martin Hardin, 82, Manhattan: April 30, 1935 – Aug. 17, 2017

MANHATTAN, Kan. – Gavona Jean Michaels Martin Hardin, 82, died Thursday, Aug. 17, 2017, at Meadowlark Hills Retirement Community, Manhattan, Kan. She was born on April 30, 1935, in Olivet, Kan. to Edwin and Pauline (Schrader) Michaels.

The oldest of six siblings, Gavona grew up with her parents, Harold and Pauline Supple, in Michigan Valley, Kan., graduating from Overbrook Rural High School in 1953.  She attended Kansas State University, where she was involved in numerous university groups, serving as president of the school of home economics her senior year, and made many friends.  She graduated with a degree in home economics education and extension in 1957.

On Dec. 22, 1957, she married the love of her life, Walter W. Martin. She spent 11 years traveling the United States as the wife of an Air Force officer. During that time her three children, Julie, Jeff and Michael were born in Georgia, Washington and Alabama.

After the 1969 death of Walt in Vietnam, Gavona moved with her children to Topeka, Kan., where she was a member of PEO, the Crestview United Methodist Church, Christians Women’s Club, Kansas State University Alumni Board of Directors from 1980-1983, serving as secretary for one year, and active with her children, neighbors, friends and family. During that time, she continued her education at Kansas State University earning a Master’s Degree in Human Ecology in 1977.

In 1982, Gavona married Warren L. Hardin, and moved to Belleville, Kan. Gavona was a member of the Belleville PEO, First United Methodist Church, and Delphian Society. In 1983, Warren and Gavona were the Kansas State University Honorary Parents. Warren passed away in 1990.

Gavona moved to Manhattan in 2013.

She is survived by her children Julie (Scott) Coonrod, of Manhattan, Jeff (Laura) Martin, Mission Woods, Kan., and Michael (Kathy) Martin, Chanute, Kan.; stepchildren, Marc Hardin and Nancy Matz; grandchildren, Becky (Levi) Dermyer, Sam Coonrod, Joe Coonrod, Grace Martin, Walter Martin, David (Katie) Martin, Jack Martin, and Katie Martin; siblings, Charles (Alice) Michaels, Duane (Nancy) Supple, Dean (Diana) Supple, Janie (PJ) Wyand, Dennis Supple, Kathy Knabach, Dan Martin; and numerous nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.

She is preceded in death by her husbands, Major Walter Martin and Warren L. Hardin; her father, Edwin Michaels, and her parents, Pauline and Harold Supple; and in-laws, Lloyd and Edith Martin, Judy Martin, and Wayne Knabach.

Funeral services will be at 2 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 24, at Bath-Naylor Funeral Home, Pittsburg, Kan., with Rev. Dan Muter officiating. Burial will follow at Highland Park Cemetery, Pittsburg. Family will receive friends at the funeral home one hour before the services.

Memorial donations can be made to the Walter Martin Blue Key Scholarship fund at Kansas State University and the PEO scholarship fund and may be sent in care of Bath-Naylor Funeral Home 522 S. Broadway, Pittsburg, KS 66762. Condolences may be left at www.bathnaylor.com.


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