Vivian Yvonne Denison

Vivian Yvonne (Lackey) Denison

Vivian Yvonne Denison  died on Friday February 7, 2014, surrounded by her family, in her home at Grace Gardens Assisted Living.  Vivian was born June 23, 1928 in Udall Kansas, the Daughter of William Andrew Lackey  and Viola Swindell Lackey.  Vivian grew up in Rainbow Bend and Valley Center, Kansas, where she graduated from High School in 1946.  She attended Wichita (State) University and received her BA in Business and minor in education in 1950. On June 4, 1951 she married Terry R. Denison to whom she was married for 59 years until his death in 2010.

She was preceded in death by her parents, by her loving husband Terry, and by her great-grandson William Burkholder.  She is survived by her brother, Raleigh (Bonnie) Lackey, of Valley Center Kansas, her children, Stephen (Lisa) Denison of Austin Texas, Becky (Ted) Hartsig of  Overland Park, Ks.,  Mark (Laura) Denison of Nashville, TN, and Leslie (Daryl) Rutschmann of Topeka, Ks. She adored her grandchildren: Natalie, Caroline, Antonia, Hannah, Colleen (Doug), Ian (Sarah), Luke, Julia, Kelly,  Jamie (Justin) and Nathan (Kellye); as well as her great-granddaughter Kellan.

Vivian lived at Grace Gardens Assisted Living since 2006 and grew to view the staff as members of her extended family. We are profoundly grateful to Grace Gardens for working so hard to assure Vivian was able to stay in her home and live life to the fullest extent possible with caring, dignity and comfort.

Vivian was a woman of great ability, optimism and elegance.  She endured many physical disabilities and illnesses over the past 20 years yet through it all she thrived, growing in kindness and demonstrating a love for life and those around her.   Vivian lived life with a steadfastness and tenacity and forthrightly tackled her challenges and encouraged the same  in others.  Her laugh was infectious and her positive attitude inspired the best in all . We will miss her smile.

A memorial service will be held on Saturday,  March 8, 2014 at 1 PM,  at Leawood United Methodist Church, 2915 W. 95th St.  Leawood, Kansas. Interment of ashes will be at Leawood UMC columbarium immediately following the service.  A reception with family and friends will follow interment at the Church from 2-4 PM.

In lieu of flowers, contributions are suggested to Leawood United Methodist Church


  1. Ronda (Lackey) Schwab on March 7, 2014 at 10:52 am

    Aunt Vivian had a beautiful light that shown from within each time I was fortunate enough to visit her these past few years. Though her body was weak, she always remained strong. Her sense of humor was still there. Her final years were not easy. I thank God for her wonderful family, always willing and able to be there for her and help with her needs. I will remember my beautiful aunt for the courage she displayed and I hope to see her again one day in heaven. My deepest sympathy to my cousins, my heart breaks for you. I pray you’ll remain strong, as you have so much of your mother, grandmother within you. God bless you all!

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