|Birth: ||Sep. 28, 1905|
|Death: ||Aug. 7, 1997|
Wife of former governor loved volunteer work
Newton's first and only first lady of Kansas, Cora "Sis" McCuish, died Thursday (Aug 7, 1997) at Presbyterian Manor following a year-long illness. She was 91.
She was the wife of former Gov. John McCuish, who served as the state's chief executive for 11 days in 1957 when Fred Hall resigned early as governor after being defeated in the Republican primary. Gov. McCuish then appointed Hall to the Kansas Supreme Court.
In an interview published in the Topeka Daily Capital after her husband was sworn into office, the new first lady said she had no plans for her short stint as first lady to make changes at the Executive Mansion: "I'm just going to rest and ‘live it up'," she said.
Although the McCuishes weren't at the governor's mansion long, she said it was like being Cinderella. During their time there, which she said became a "continual open house," dozens of friends visited from Newton.
Sue Ice and her husband, District Judge Ted Ice, were close friends and remember McCuish as a caring person who enjoyed others, even into her last few years at Presbyterian Manor in Newton.
"She took friends at the manor to the grocery store," Sue Ice said. "She took care of other people and was the most cheerful, positive person I've ever known, even through her illness this past year."
Late in 1996, Ice wrote a letter to Gov. Bill Graves, encouraging him to write a note to "Sis" because she was ill.
"Sis is a very amazing woman. She drove her car until last year... and has always been a pillar of strength and loved by all who know her." she wrote.
Cora Etta "Sis" McCuish was born Sept. 28, 1905, in Clements to Clarence and Bertha Shaft Hedricks. She was a resident of Newton most of her life.
She married John B. McCuish Sept. 9 1925. She was a homemaker and enjoyed volunteer work.
The McCuishes were active in the Republican politics during the 1940's and 1950's and backed Dwight D. Eisenhower in his bid for the Republican nomination in 1952.
In 1956, Sis McCuish was honored in Newton as Woman of the Year in Church and Religion. After leaving Topeka in 1957, the McCuishes returned to Newton where they published the Harvey County News. After her husband died in 1962, she served as a housemother at the Kappa Alpha Theta house at the University of Kansas in Lawrence and then at the Washburn University in Topeka She later moved to Ashland to care for a friend and moved back to Presbyterian Manor in Newton in the early 1980's. She had done volunteer work at the manor.
She was a member of First United Presbyterian Church of Newton and a member of Chapter EQ, P.E.O. In her earlier years, she had served on the Axtell Christian Hospital Guild and was a member of the Ladies Reading Circle and Presbyterian Manor Auxiliary.
She was preceded in death by her husband and parents.
She is survived by several nieces and nephews, including Clay Hedrick Jr. of Newton. Her brother, Clay Hedrick Sr. served as state auditor until the office was abolished.
A memorial service is scheduled for 2:30 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 12 at First United Presbyterian Church of Newton with the Rev. Jim Anderson officiating.
The burial service will be private.
Clarence E. Hedrick (1872 - 1959)
Bertha J. Shaft Hedrick (1881 - 1947)
John Berridge McCuish (1906 - 1962)*
Clay E. Hedrick (1901 - 1976)*
Carl Bruce Hedrick (1903 - 1967)*
Cora E. Hedrick McCuish (1905 - 1997)
Created by: Barb
Record added: Mar 13, 2008
Find A Grave Memorial# 25238302
Added: Apr. 29, 2008