Friends, family and former students this week are mourning the loss of Marvin West, a Shawnee Mission teacher who spent decades at Hillcrest Junior High/Westridge Middle School.
West died July 3 from liver disease. He was 76.
A native of southeast Kansas, he became the first member of his family to graduate from college when he took a bachelor’s degree in education from Pittsburg State University. He managed to pay for much of his college education with money earned from gigs playing with Connie and the Bellhops, a rockabilly outfit. He went on to earn a master’s degree in education from KU.
He spent most of his 39 years as a teacher at what is today Westridge Middle School.
West is survived by his wife Glenna, children Donna and Brian, and grandchildren Donovan, Estelle, Evan and Geneva.
The family is holding what they are dubbing “Marvin’s Going Away Gathering” this Friday, July 13 at the Matt Ross Community Center from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
“In lieu of flowers, the family asks attendee’s bring a side dish or favorite snack, only if able, to contribute to an old fashioned Mulberry style potluck. Tissues provided,” reads the invitation.