Michael H. Lewark died peacefully with family, after succumbing to complications of prostate cancer on the afternoon of February 8, 2021. Mike was born on August 16, 1943, to William H. Lewark and Billie Louise Lewark in McAlester, OK. Mike grew up in Coffeyville, KS, attending Field Kindley Memorial High School. Mike graduated from Kansas State College of Pittsburg (now PSU) in 1966 with a BA in Mathematics and a minor in Chemistry. He was accepted for Officer Training School for the United States Air Force in September 1966. As a 2nd Lt. he was selected for Communications/Electronics Warfare Officer Training, which he completed in 1967. He served in various assignments during the Vietnam War and was discharged in 1971. He then joined the Kansas Air National Guard Unit at McConnell AFB, KS, where he served for 5 years as commander of the 184th Communications Flight. The unit was recognized as the Outstanding Communication Flight in the nation in 1973 under his leadership.
In 1977, he transferred to the USAF Reserves and was assigned to the USAF Academy at Colorado Springs CO, as an Academy Liaison Officer where he served until his retirement in December 1994. He interviewed hundreds of high school students and assisted with their efforts to receive an appointment to the Academy. He also chaired Academy Selection Panels for MO Congressman “Ike” Skelton, KS Congressman Dan Glickman, and CO Senator Hank Brown. During this time, he was promoted to Major, then Lt Colonel, the rank at which he retired after 29 years of Active and Reserve Duty.
Mike began working for the US Postal Service in 1973 as a city carrier and was quickly promoted to an Internal Auditor (PSE) in 1974. He served as acting postmaster in Pittsburg, KS, St Joseph, MO, Kansas City, KS and Shawnee Mission, KS. He was appointed Postmaster at Warrensburg, MO, in January 1979. While in Warrensburg he obtained his MBA with an emphasis in Economics in 1982 from Central Missouri State (now UCM). He was selected as the University’s Outstanding Graduate Student in 1982 and also was recognized as the Outstanding MBA Graduate.
Mike continued to work for the Postal Services as Director of Field Operations in Wichita, KS, and then Director of Operational Support in Denver, CO, until retirement in 1999. At that time, he and Mary relocated to Pittsburg, Kansas. He then began a new career as General Manager of Columbus Ford for several years followed by serving as Vice President of Marketing for UNB Bank before fully retiring in 2011. He was very active in the community and with Pittsburg State University. He was a member of numerous service organizations and advisory boards. He was an avid supporter of Pittsburg State University and PSU Athletics.
Mike married the love of his life, Mary E. (Jabben) Lewark in 1979. Mike had three beautiful children, Michael Brock (his wife Katie) of Overland Park, KS, Sarah Cantu (her husband Adam) of Downers Grove, IL, and Susan Fleming (her husband Andrew) of Overland Park, KS. He was the best Papa to his six grandchildren, Grace Lewark, AJ, Sadie and Winnie Cantu, and Liz and Jake Fleming.
He is survived by his wife, children, and grandchildren, his mother Billie Lewark (Coffeyville), his sister Janet Bryant (Fort Smith), his niece Paige Bryant (Pittsburg), and his sister-in-law Nita Lewark (Wichita), and Brock’s mother, Linda Stancliffe.
He was proceeded in death by William H. Lewark, Sr. (father), William H. Lewark, Jr. (brother), and Dona Belle White (grandmother).
Mike cared deeply for so many and touched so many lives. A celebration of Life service will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that any charitable donations be made to PSU Foundation, PO Box 4005, Pittsburg, KS 66762 to support the PSU Women’s Basketball Program. https://psufoundation.givingfuel.com/psu-give-to-page Friends may leave condolences online at www.brennermortuary.com
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Michael H. Lewark, please visit our floral store.
200 Shirk Annex, Pittsburg KS 66762