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Dorothy Neuschafer Grothusen (1922-2023)

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Dorothy Neuschafer Grothusen of Ellsworth County died May 13, 2023, at Salina Presbyterian Manor at age 100. She was born Dec. 1, 1922, on a farm 10 miles southwest of Ellsworth to Henry and Mary (Obadal) Neuschafer.  

She attended Cass Ridge Country School, a one-room schoolhouse, and graduated from Ellsworth High School in 1940. She was then employed by the AAA (Agricultural Adjustment Administration), achieving the position of chief clerk.

She married another Ellsworth County native, Dale Grothusen, on June 30, 1945, on Mercer Island near Seattle, Wash. Following his discharge from the U.S. Army Air Force that year, they moved to the Grothusen family farm northeast of Ellsworth. Together they operated the cattle and wheat farm for 58 years.

Dorothy was a skilled writer who enjoyed interviewing interesting people. These combined qualities led her to write hundreds of stories as a reporter and feature writer for the Ellsworth Reporter and later as a columnist for the Ellsworth County Independent-Reporter. She was also an excellent cook who was best known for her pies, often made with cherries from their own trees.

Her activities in the Ellsworth community included the First Presbyterian Church of Ellsworth, the VFW Auxiliary, the American Legion Auxiliary, the Ellsworth County Medical Center Auxiliary and the Ellsworth County Historical Society. She and Dale enjoyed playing pinochle with their life-long card club friends, visiting their grown children and traveling to Czechoslovakia (now the Czech Republic) and Germany. They avidly followed Czech polka music and dancing, traveling to polka fests in Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa, Texas and Arizona.

Dorothy was preceded in death by her parents, her husband Dale and her brothers Alfred, John and Edward.  

She is survived by daughters Marsha Drebelbis (James) and Ruth Obadal (Charles Hammonds) and son William Grothusen Brooks (Richard Black), her brother Ben and many nieces, nephews and extended family.

At Dorothy’s request, her body will be donated to the University of Kansas Medical Center for education and research. Burial of the remains will be at Ellsworth Memorial Cemetery. A memorial service will be scheduled at a later date. Memorials are suggested to the Ellsworth County Historical Society, c/o Parsons Funeral Home, P.O. Box 45, Ellsworth, KS 67439. Condolences can be left at