Dr. Robert Julian Russell, Jr.
Dr. Robert Julian Russell, Jr., 92, passed Wednesday, July 4, 2018 surrounded by his loving family. Born May 2, 1926 to Ann Lorene Gillespie Russell and Robert Julian Russell in Gainesville, TX, he enjoyed hunting and fishing as a boy.
Upon his High School graduation in 1943, he left Gainesville to start his college education at Texas A&M. He was called to service, attended Boot Camp at Ft. Riley and was inducted into U.S. Horse Cavalry where he earned his Trooper Rifleman Certificate. He fought in close combat with Troop F, 8th Regiment, First Cavalry Division in Luzon and Leyte, Philippines where he was Platoon Point Man. As he entered Tokyo Harbor, he witnessed the signing of Japanese Surrender to General Douglas MacArthur aboard the USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay in 1945. Later he served as a Medic and 10 years in the Reserves. He was awarded the Combat Infantryman Badge for active ground combat during World War II.
After discharge, he returned to Texas A&M where he earned a M.S. Degree of Zoology, minoring in Botany and Paleontology in 1951.
A fellowship brought him to the Museum of Natural History at The University of Kansas to study under Dr. E. Raymond Hall, as he worked toward his PHD, which he received in 1966.
Dr. Russell taught a variety of science courses at The University of Kansas and The University of Missouri – Kansas City to generations of doctors, dentists, pharmacists and nurses from 1951 to 1988.
Robert Russell joined his wife, Danna, selling real estate for DL Mayor, was co-owner and Broker of Stapp and Russell, and continued his real estate career with JC Nichols, and Reece Nichols until 2005.
Dr. Russell was a member of the Kansas City St. Andrew Society and Heart of America A&M Club. He was proud to be a 4th Generation Texan and Texas Aggie and always attended the annual Aggie Muster on April 21st. He was an avid reader and gardener throughout his life and his garden was featured in Flower and Garden Magazine. He also enjoyed spending time with his children, grandchildren and Scotties.
He is preceded in death by his Father and Mother; His Sister, Ann Russell Trenary; Brother-in-law, Pete Trenary; Sister-in-law, Lucie Barton Adger, Brother-in-law, Johnny Adger; and Granddaughter, Christina Jean Kimes.
Survived by the love of his life and married just 6 days shy of 70 wonderful years to Danna Barton Russell, they had four children: Robert Julian Russell III; Shannon Ray (Rusty) Russell Watson (Joe); Tamera Blaine Russell Kimes (Chuck); Shawn Brendon Russell (Karen); and six Grandchildren: Joe (Doby) and Robert (Bob) Watson; Kevin and Jaclyn Kimes; Isabella (Bella) and Margaret (Meggie) Russell; his nephew, Rusty Trenary (Ann); and devoted cat, Shayla, of the home.
A Celebration of Life will be held on Thursday, July 12, 2018 at Johnson County Chapel at 11200 Metcalf Avenue, Overland Park, KS 66210. Visitation will be held at 3PM and will be immediately followed by a Memorial Service, including full Military Honors, at 4PM.
In lieu of flowers, Dr. Russell’s family has requested donations to: Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve; one of The 8 Wonders of Kansas, as it represents the last significant example of the tallgrass prairie in North America located in the Flint Hills.