Joseph Dennis Pruitt, 79, Overbrook: May 28, 1942 – Jan. 10, 2022 – Osage County Online | Osage County News

Joseph Dennis Pruitt, 79, Overbrook: May 28, 1942 – Jan. 10, 2022

OVERBROOK, Kan. – Joseph Dennis “Joe, Junior, or Dennis” Pruitt, 79, a resident of Overbrook, Kan., since 1978, passed away Monday, Jan. 10, 2022, at a Topeka hospital from COVID-related complications. A celebration of his life will be 11 a.m. Saturday, July 2, 2022, at Apple Valley Events Center, 9259 Apple Valley Lane, Ozawkie, Kan., with visitation and lunch following. Joe was born May 28, 1942, at a Junction City, Kan., hospital, to Master Sergeant Joseph Victor Pruitt and Sarah Bernice Richards Pruitt.

The family lived on the Ft. Riley, Kan., base until Joseph Victor retired from the US Army and relocated the family to Topeka, Kan., where Bernice grew up, and her relatives lived in the surrounding area. In 1947, the family moved to Wellington, Ill., where Joseph Victor grew up and his family lived and farmed.

Joseph Dennis spent most summers in Kansas with his grandparents, George and Ethel Murphy Richards. Joe helped with the farm chores, played ball, and went coon hunting with his Grandfather George. Joe enjoyed spending time with his family and friends, especially with his cousin, George Richards.

With the exception of his eighth grade year when Joe attended the Tecumseh, Kan., public schools, Joe attended school in Wellington through his sophomore year of high school, when his family moved to Chicago, Ill. In 1960, Joe graduated with a senior class of 435 from Fenger High School. While in high school, Joe worked at Kresge’s after school and on weekends. Joe attended Chicago Teacher’s College for one year. After that he started a plumbers apprenticeship, working in Chicago, and then continued with a plumbers apprenticeship in Tecumseh. Joe did farm labor work for various farmers in Wellington and Tecumseh, where he moved to in 1962. He worked as a substitute bulk Topeka Capital Journal delivery driver for the northeastern Kansas route. Joe did road maintenance work for Tecumseh Township, Shawnee County, Kan. In 1974, Joe was employed by Kansas Power & Light as a maintenance mechanic and was stationed at the Tecumseh Energy Center, retiring in 1997. In 1978, Joe moved to Overbrook, where he farmed and raised calves until 2005. After retirement, Joe worked for the Junction Township, Osage County, Kan., doing road maintenance.

Joe enjoyed cooking, fishing, boating, and shooting sporting clays and trap. From 2001 to 2018 he volunteered setting targets at Locust Point Gun Club, Lyndon, Kan. Joe loved operating tractors, combines, farm equipment, graders, bulldozers, backhoes, dump trucks, and mowers. He never met a stranger. All will miss his smile, laugh, and storytelling. Joe was a member of the Michigan Valley United Methodist Church and taught the teenage boys Sunday school class for several years. He was a member of the Osage County Farm Bureau and served as president for one year.

Joe was preceded in death by his parents, Joseph Victor and Bernice Richards Pruitt; mother-in-law and father-in-law, Lena Barker Metzger and Pat Metzger; sisters and brothers-in-law, Denise (Kenneth) Leverenz , Diana (Jim) Sands, and Ted Metzger; nieces, Tracy Sands Powell, Christina Metzger, and Shelly Metzger Davis; and aunts, uncles, and several cousins.

Joe is survived by his wife of 46 years, Jody; son, Nick (Renee Williams) Pruitt; grandchildren Tyler (Kelsey) Pruitt, and Bailey (Travis) Greene; great-grandchildren, Mason and Coleman Pruitt, and Caiden and Lexie Greene; sisters-in-law and brother-in-law, Mildred Metzger, and Patricia (Ken) Verrone; and aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, cousins, other family members, and a host of friends.

Donations can be made to the Joseph Pruitt Memorial Fund for Osage County 4-H Shooting Sports, in care of Pruitt Family, 3743 SE Howard Dr., Topeka, KS 66605. See Davidson Funeral Home, Topeka, at www.davidsonfuneral.com.

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