Carleen H. ‘Carla’ Bach, 98, Topeka: Sept. 7, 1920 – Aug. 4, 2019

TOPEKA, Kan. – Carleen H. “Carla” Bach, 98, was lovingly supported by family and friends until she passed away Aug. 4, 2019, in Topeka, Kan. She was born in Dwight, Kan., on Sept. 7, 1920, on the family farm, a child of the Great Depression, Prohibition and Dust Bowl era. She was the daughter of John Harrison “Harry” and Birdie Lynn Crute Swartz.

Carla graduated from Dwight Rural High School in 1938 and attended nursing school in Salina, Kan. She married Michael Metzger in 1940. From this union two daughters were born. Carla was active in World War II at Boeing, in Wichita, Kan., working on the first B-52 that shipped from that plant. In 1946, Carla boarded a ship with her daughters, aged 5 and 6, and traveled to Germany to join their father, who was serving in the Army.

Throughout the 1950s, she was a single mother who raised her children with the loving support of her family. During this time, she lived in Dwight and had two jobs, working at Fort Riley, Kan., and at the local grocery store on weekends.

Her high school classmate, Lee Bach, returning from a 20-year naval career, chanced into her grocery store in Dwight and they were reacquainted. They married in 1961, sharing 51 years of happiness together before his passing in 2012. Her government career took them to Topeka, St. Joseph, Mo., Omaha, Neb., and Las Cruces, N.M. Carla worked primarily for the Social Security Administration. She was a member of the council that instituted the Medicare program, and while on this task force met President Johnson and President Truman.

After retirement from the government, Carla continued a decade long career in estate sales management and participated in a variety of volunteer and community activities in Las Cruces and El Paso, Texas, where she and Lee resided until 2008. They returned to Kansas, living in Overbrook, where many dear friendships were made. She loved people and helping those in need. Above all, Carla enjoyed visiting with her family and friends. She was known for her energy, sense of humor and generosity.

Carla most recently lived at McCrite’s retirement community in Topeka. One of her activities at McCrite’s was to deliver the daily Topeka Capital-Journal to two floors in the building. She made many close friends there and enjoyed the events they shared, especially volunteer activities such as the Harvester’s project.

Carla loved reading, growing things, shopping for garage sale bargains and watching sports, especially the Kansas State Wildcats and the Green Bay Packers. She welcomed adventure, riding in a hot air balloon in her 70s, visiting Boston in her 80s, and traveling to New Mexico and Michigan in her 90s to visit family.

Carla was a lifetime member of the Dwight Methodist Church, and was a member of Overbrook Library and the National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association.

She was preceded in death by her parents; husband, Lee; and nine siblings, Katherine, Martin, John, twin brother Carl, infant brother Robert Lee, Pauline “Peg”, Harriette, Billie Joyce, and Nora. She was also preceded in death by her grandson, Thad Fuller, and a son-in-law, Allan Coon.

She is survived by her two daughters, Eula Lee Metzger Fuller and Connie Marie Metzger Horne; grandchildren, Deborah Coon, Christine Lipscomb and husband Steve, Stephen Fuller, Sean and wife Amanda, Angela Horne and Laura Horne Popp; great-grandchildren, Christopher Wesley, Joshua Fontius, Jacob Fontius, and Kendall Grace Fuller; great-great grandchildren, James, Kaylee Ann, and Sophi Black; and many beloved nieces and nephews.

The family is grateful for the loving care provided by the excellent staff at Midland Care Hospice House, in Topeka.

Visitation will be 6-8 p.m. Friday, Aug. 9, at Kevin Brennan Family Funeral Home, 2801 SW Urish Rd., Topeka, KS 66614. Memorial service will be 2 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 10, at Dwight United Methodist Church, 501 Seventh St., Dwight, KS 66849, with visitation one-hour prior. Inurnment will follow in Dwight Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Dwight Methodist Church or Midland Care Hospice House, sent in care of the funeral home.

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