TOPEKA, KS – Sammye Jean Starkey, 72, Topeka, Kansas, passed away at her home Tuesday, June 16, 2020.
Sammye was born March 13, 1948, in Topeka, Kansas, the daughter of Orville “Smokey” and Louise “Cham” Wamego Rice. Sammye graduated from Topeka High School and Stewart’s Beauty Academy. On January 10, 1976, Sammye and Tom Starkey were united in marriage. He survives. Sammye and Tom had their first child, Emmylou Starkey, on February 28, 1979. Emmylou preceded her in death.
Sammye was a member of Mater Dei Assumption Church and the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation. She worked in several Topeka beauty shops over the years. She enjoyed many road trips with Tom before settling down to start their family. They loved to go out dancing on the weekends with friends and family. She loved to laugh and listen to music. Sammye adored her dogs and granddogs. She was a strong woman who overcame many health obstacles over the years. One of her favorite pastimes was talking on the phone. Sammye dedicated her life to her husband, kids, and family. She was an aunt to several beloved nieces and nephews. Sammye was a special lady who will be missed tremendously.
Also grateful to have shared Sammye’s life are her son, Charley Starkey of Topeka; her daughter, Gloria Honn and her husband, Adam of Topeka; her sister, Elizabeth Bartlett of Topeka; her brother, Raymond Rice and his wife, Jeanie of Topeka; her half-brother, Orville Rice Jr. of Mayetta; and was dearly loved by her nieces and nephews.
Sammye was also preceded in death by her parents and siblings, Lavina Olson, Jeffery Rice, and Sylvia K. Rice.
Sammye’s family will greet friends from 2-4 Sunday at Kevin Brennan Family Funeral Home, 2801 SW Urish Road, Topeka, Kansas 66614. Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10 a.m. Monday at Mater Dei Holy Name Church. Burial will follow in Shipshee Cemetery, Mayetta, Kansas.
- Courtesy of Kevin Brennan Family Funeral Home