Harrison “Poke” Stover was born Sept. 15, 1939, and said his final “I love you” on Thursday, Dec. 31, 2020.
He was born in Parsons and his parents were Harrison and Mary (Farris) Stover.
Poke is survived by his wife, Lynn; children, Jolene, Leanda and Jeremy. His grandchildren include Audra, Eli (greeted him in heaven), Terry, Jaxon, Jase; and great-grandchildren are Rymington and Ryver; and dear friend Angela Wilson and several nieces and nephews.
He was also preceded in death by two brothers, Bill and Kenny Stover; and two sisters, Joyce Peterson and Judy Mead.
Poke was a man who cared especially about family, friends, individuals with special needs and sports. He was very active in organizing and coaching youth sports in Parsons and served as president of Parsons Babe Ruth league. For 40 years he volunteered and coached Special Olympic athletes and teams and was recognized as “outstanding coach.” He played for and coached many men’s fast pitch softball teams, girls basketball, softball, boys baseball and basketball. In his later years his true enjoyment was watching his children and grandchildren play the games he loved. Poke graduated in 1958 from Parsons High School, where he was a standout athlete. He was a member of the 1960 Parsons Junior College national championship basketball team. After junior college he attended and graduated from Emporia State University and was a pitcher on the baseball team. He was a U.S. Navy veteran, working as a storekeeper and sailing on the USS Saratoga.
For 35 years he worked as the recreation director at the Parsons State Hospital and Training Center until his retirement. We loved hearing stories about playing ball against Satchel Paige, taking a few exciting bus rides, coconut crème pie, the blue cookie monster costume, winning the fast pitch state tournament at 50 and ducks that found their way into the state swimming pool.
An informal gathering and signing the guest book will be from 10:30 a.m. to noon Thursday at Carson-Wall Funeral Home. Please wear a face mask.
Memorials are suggested to an educational fund for Jaxon and Jase Stover. They may be left at or sent to the funeral home at Box 942, Parsons, KS 67357. Online messages may be left at www.wallfuneralservices.com.