By The Mercury

Jim “Doc” Burcham, 93, died the evening of July 1, 2014, at the Good Shepherd Hospice House in Manhattan. He was born in Kansas City on Nov. 21, 1920, the son of D. H. and Sarah (Calhoun) Burcham.

Doc met the love of his life, Helen Barlow, at Wyandotte High in Kansas City. They were married Jan. 28, 1944, just before Doc was scheduled to leave for Europe in WWII.  They celebrated their 68th wedding anniversary in 2011. Doc and Helen were blessed with two children, Jim and Linda.

Doc received his doctorate degree in dentistry from the Kansas City Western Dental College, now known as The UMKC School of Dentistry. In 1944, Doc headed to Europe in World War II. He was a Captain in the Army, serving as a Dental Officer in the 83rd Armored Reconnaissance Battalion. When he came home from the war, Doc and Helen made Kansas City their home and set up a private dental practice. They lived there several years.

In 1959, Doc, Helen and their two children left Kansas City in search of a small town with strong family values that was in need of a good dentist and settled in Goodland. Over the next 25 years, he became an integral part of the Goodland community. Both Doc and Helen enjoyed playing golf and were active members of Sugar Hills Country Club. Blessed with a beautiful tenor voice, Doc loved singing as much as he loved golf. He sang in the First Methodist Church choir for many years as well as community theatre. Doc was also quite the dancer. He and Helen loved dancing and enjoyed it well into their mid-80s. Doc was a life member for over 66 years of the Goodland Kansas Masonic Lodge, as well as several other organizations.

In 1994, Doc and Helen retired and moved to River Bend Golf Resort in Brownsville, Texas. They enjoyed playing golf in the warm weather year-round, dancing, going to Mexico and doing all the great things that retirees do.

Shortly after Helen passed away in 2011, Doc moved to Manhattan to be close to his daughter, Linda and her husband, John. 

Doc is preceded in death by his wife, his son, Jim, in 1992 and all eight of his siblings. He is survived by his daughter, Linda, and son-in-law, John, of Mesa, Ariz., sister-in-law Jeane Fanestil of Sun Lakes, Ariz., two grandchildren: Adrienne Shostak of Easton, Md., Brandon Shostak and Josie Mauk of Easton, Md., one great-grandchild, Annalise Shostak and several nieces and nephews.

Cremation is planned. Private family services will be held at a later date.

Memorial contributions may be made to Friendship Meals. Contributions may be left in care of the Yorgensen-Meloan-Londeen Funeral Home, 1616 Poyntz Ave., Manhattan, KS 66502.

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