Merle William Welch, 86, of Topeka, joined his beloved wife, Marie Catheryn, on Oct. 3, 2022, in Heaven. He was a resident of Brewster Place in Topeka prior to his passing.
Merle was born Feb. 28, 1936, in Nemaha County near Corning, the son of Thomas Patrick and Mary Cecilia (Schmidt) Welch.
He served his country with the Army Reserves and was a control mechanic for DuPont/Flexel cellophane plant.
He enjoyed music, playing the guitar, especially Bluegrass (he was a member of Pickers and Fiddlers of Valley Falls) and Big Band music. Merle and Marie, who were joined at the hip, loved dancing and going on bus tours. They especially enjoyed spending time with their grandchildren.
They were members of St. Matthew Catholic Church and the Moose Lodge in Topeka.
Merle married the love of his life, Marie Catheryn Mergenmeier, on June 6, 1959, in Seneca. She preceded him in death on January 19, 2018.
He is survived by their children, Janice Salyer and husband Tim, Michael Welch and wife Lori, Catheryn Hrenchir and husband Tim, and Cheryl Welch, all of Topeka; his brother, Lauren Welch and wife Maura, of Overland Park; and his in-laws, Eleanor Rusche of Seneca, Jeannette Graham of Casper, WY, Barb Welch of Omaha, NE, Teri Welch of Milwaukee, WI, Alberta Welch of Rapid City, SD, and Nadine Mergenmeier, of Topeka.
He is also survived by his beloved grandchildren, Natasha Averiss and husband Ron, of Farnborough, England; Jessica Tommaso and husband Josh, of Topeka; Phillip Salyer and wife Melissa, of Belton, MO; Emily DeShazer and fiance Mick Delfelder, of Topeka; Ian DeShazer and Stephanie Teater, of Lawrence; and Connor Welch of Derby; as well as great-grandchildren Benjamin Averiss, Evelyn Averiss, Josephine Tommaso, Arthur Salyer and Jameson Tommaso.
Merle was preceded in death by brothers John Welch, Martin Welch, Cecil Welch, Maurice Welch, Elwyn Welch, Claude Welch and Lillis “Bud” Welch, as well as sisters Patricia Braden and Regina Keehn. Brothers Matthew Jason Welch, Anthony Michael Welch, Patrick Thomas Welch and Donald Paul Welch died in childhood.
Merle will lie in state beginning at 5:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 10, at Brennan-Mathena Funeral Home, where a Parish Rosary will be prayed at 7 p.m. Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10 a.m. Tuesday, Oct. 11, at St. Matthew Catholic Church. Lunch will be served after the service. Graveside services will follow at 2 p.m. in Sts. Peter and Paul Cemetery in Seneca.
The family suggests memorial contributions be made to Parkinson’s Foundation in loving memory of Marie, who succumbed to the disease’s effects, and sent in care of Brennan-Mathena Funeral Home, 800 S.W. 6th Ave., Topeka, KS 66603.
To leave condolences or share a fond memory of Merle, please visit www.brennanmathenafh.com.
Arrangements entrusted to Brennan-Mathena Funeral Home, 800 SW 6th Ave., Topeka, KS 66603.