OBITUARY: Debbi L. Elmore

Debbi L. Elmore, 70, journalist, died Thursday, Sept. 15, 2022.

The memorial service will be at 1 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 24, at Downing & Lahey West Mortuary.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Kennith C. and Dorothy E. McGinn.

Elmore was survived by her husband, Jim Elmore; daughter, Andi (William Dickey) Elmore; granddaughter, MacKenzie Dickey; sisters, Carleen (George) Currier and Candi (Jerry) Young; nieces, Kelsi (Kevin) Currier and Lesley (Levi) McKown; and nephews, Chad (Shannon) Currier, Ryan (Gina) Currier, Jeremy (Netta) Young and Justin Young.

Deborah (Debbi) L. Elmore was born to Dorothy and Dutch McGinn, the oldest of three daughters. Her father often told friends his insurance was cheaper because “his daughters were girls,” among other helpful anecdotes.

She learned from Dutch’s impeccable work ethic and doing for others regardless of what needed to be done for oneself. Debbi learned the ability to connect with people from her mom. She grew up with two incredible younger sisters, Carleen and Candi. The three of them are exemplary examples of what love is and should be among sisters.

She discovered her ability to tell others’ stories as she went on to earn a degree in public relations and journalism from Wichita State University and spent her entire adult career meeting and telling the stories of remarkable people. Debbi’s truest gift was to tell their stories. She earned numerous awards and national recognition. Family trips were often taken around where the awards ceremonies were taking place.

Debbi worked in health care and many of her co-workers often became lifelong friends, some coining the nicknames “Mighty Mouse” or “Cheeseburger Queen,” due to her ability to work tirelessly to get things done and never turn down a great burger with cheese from a local greasy spoon.

Debbi met Jim, her husband of 44 years, at a small newspaper in Independence, Kan. She was the reporter and Jim the photographer for her articles. They were quite the dynamic duo. They married on April 8, 1978.

Jim and Debbi had one daughter, Andi, and Debbi quickly instilled the significance of a strong career ethic, volunteerism and community service. Valuing others, respecting all, no matter our differences and learning to speak for those who cannot were important lessons she wanted Andi to understand. Debbi became a grandmother in 2010 to MacKenzie and those lessons are being passed on to her today.

Debbi adored her parents, sisters, brothers-in-law, nieces and nephews, her husband, her daughter, her granddaughter and friends. Mom never found fault in others and always looked for the positive.

May the road rise up to meet her, may she travel with the wind at her back, may the sunshine be warm on her face, the rain fall soft on her fields, and, until we meet again, may God hold her in the palm of His hand.

Memorials have been established with Alzheimer’s Association, Central and Western Kansas, 1820 E. Douglas Ave., Wichita, Kan., 67214, and American Diabetes Association, P. O. Box 7023, Merrifield, Va., 22116. Share tributes at: www.dlwichita.com.

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