Donald W. ‘Don’ Barcus

Donald W. “Don” Barcus, 70, a longtime educator and coach, passed away Tuesday, June 23, 2020, at his home in Parsons.

Donald William Barcus was born on Feb. 24, 1950, to Donald D. and Noma O. (Vitousek) Barcus in Oswego. He attended Service Valley School and graduated from Labette County Community High School in 1968. Following high school, Don played football at Kansas State College of Pittsburg, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in education in 1972.

He began his teaching career at Butler, Missouri, and then taught at Fort Scott. In 1977, Don began a long career with the Parsons school district. His first positions were social studies teacher and head football coach. Over the years, he coached many sports, including football, track, tennis and wrestling at both the high school and middle school levels. Following his retirement from the Parsons district in 2008, Don taught and coached for a time at Erie and Oswego. He then returned to Parsons and helped coach football and track until his cancer diagnosis in the summer of 2019.

Don was a member and an elder of First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Parsons. He had served on the Parsons USD 503 Board of Education and was a member of the National Education Association. His greatest joy came from spending time with his family and especially attending his children and grandchildren’s sporting events. Don enjoyed farming and raising cattle and was an avid reader. During his many years of coaching and teaching, Coach Barcus left a lasting influence over many in the Parsons community.

In October 1968, Don married Helen Alvarez. They later divorced.

In November 1992, Don was united in marriage to Janie Lucas. She survives of the home.

Other survivors include a son, Rob Barcus and his wife, Kendra, of Parsons; a daughter, Gypsy Barcus of Smithville, Missouri; a stepsons, Troy Lucas of Parsons; seven grandchildren, Hunter, Caitlin, Tanner, Conner, McKinley, Makayla and Aaron; and a sister, Vicki McKee of Chanute.

There will be a memorial service at 1 p.m. July 11 at the Parsons Municipal Auditorium. Burial will immediately follow at Sherman Cemetery. Family will receive friends from 6 to 8 p.m. July 10 at Forbes-Hoffman Funeral Home. For all events, social distancing guidelines will be followed, including the requirement of face masks.

Memorials are suggested to the Parsons Educational Foundation — Don Barcus Scholarship Fund or to First Christian Church of Parsons and may be left at or mailed to the funeral home, P.O. Box 374, Parsons, KS 67357.

Online condolences may be left at

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