NEWTON—The youngest of four sons, Emerson “Ike” Clay Gillett, was born to Claude Wallace and Mae Emily McNutt Gillett at the Kiowa Indian Hospital at Fort Sill, Okla., on April 5, 1929. He died on Friday, Dec. 4, 2020, at Kansas Christian Home in Newton.
He grew up at the Kiowa Indian Agency in Anadarko, Okla., where his father was an employee and attended Anadarko Public Schools, graduating in 1947. Ike was baptized at First Christian Church, where his family was active. During his senior year, he dedicated his life to Christian service.
He attended Oklahoma City University on a Banning Scholarship, graduating in 1951.
While in high school and college, Ike worked for Safeway Stores. Following graduation from OCU, he worked full-time for Safeway to earn money to attend Seminary.
He entered Phillips University College of the Bible, Enid, Okla., summer 1952, after being ordained by his home church.
During seminary, he worked at a Safeway store in Enid, where he met his future wife, Christina M. Warkentien.
In 1954, he became student minister of a Christian Church located near Dodge City.
Graduating from Phillips Seminary in 1955 Ike began serving Community Christian Church in Ponca City, Okla. He married Christina April 27, 1957.
Then came a one-year ministry at First Christian Church, Sallisaw, Okla. Emily was born in 1959.
They moved to Stafford in February 1960, with Ike ministering First Christian Church for 12-1/2 years. Mark was born in 1965.
Ike and Chris served First Christian Church in Colby for 14 years.
Their final official ministry was with First Christian Church in Marysville, lasting eight years. After retirement, they moved to the campus of Kansas Christian Home, in Newton.
While in Newton, Ike and Chris attended First Christian Church, enjoying the fellowship of friends there and on the campus of KCH. Ike led the Food Ministry of First Christian for many years.
His love, Christina passed away on Nov. 9, 2001.
Ike will be remembered for loving his family deeply and always joking with those around him. He gave such joy.
Preceded in death by his wife, Christina; his parents in 1951; brothers, Truman, Claude, Meriden and niece, Patricia.
Ike is survived by daughter, Emily Gillett Sewell and husband, Howard, and son, Mark W. Gillett and wife, Julia, of Oklahoma City, and five grandchildren, Gregory Randall Medders and husband, Cuong Nguyen of Chicago, Jeffrey Clayton Medders and partner, Dominique Grogan, of Denver, Aanika Jordan Gillett, who attends Culver-Stockton College, Matthew Allen Gillett, who attends Lynchburg University and David Wallace Gillett, who attends Classen High School in Oklahoma City, as well as one nephew, Michael Gillett of Longwood, Fla., dear love and friend, Joyce Lang, many beloved friends and extended family.
Burial was held at Greenwood Cemetery, Newton, with immediate family in attendance.
In Lieu of flowers, memorials to Kansas Christian Home-Fellowship of John, and First Christian Church, Newton, are appreciated. Contributions may be sent to Broadway Colonial Funeral Home, 120 E. Broadway, Newton, Kan., 67114.
Condolences may be left at www.broadwaycolonialfh.com.