OBITUARY

Morris Dean Birch

April 21, 1944December 2, 2020

Morris Dean Birch succumbed to COVID-19 the night of December 2, 2020 at age 76. He was born April 21, 1944 in Wichita, Kansas to Marjory and Lauren Birch. He was the second of five children. He would marry Suzanne Hiebert in 1965, with whom he would spend 55 years before his passing. Morris and Suzanne have three children and 10 grandchildren.

Morris was born, raised, worked, and lived in Wichita. His father was a long-time lineman for Boeing, at which Morris worked during his youth. Morris was among the first to graduate from Wichita South High School. He, like his father, two brothers, and three grandsons, became an Eagle scout.

He worked and paid his own way through Southwestern College in Winfield, Kansas, where he would meet his future wife. After graduating Southwestern with a degree in English, he taught school and sold cars to earn enough money to attend Washburn University in Topeka, from which he would earn his J.D.

After earning his JD, he returned to Wichita and joined the practice of John E. Frank. Eventually, he would leave the firm and start a series of joint practices until finally, opening a solo practice. He specialized in domestic law, defending those that often wouldn’t have had representation otherwise. He received several awards from the Kansas Bar Association for his pro bono work, in which he had significant pride. Another source of great pride was all of the work he did to help either couples adopt or find to find homes for newborns.

He never, however, let his work get in the way of his family life. He was a constant presence in his children’s lives, never missing a game or a performance, regardless of how minor those contests may have been. He worked hard to provide his children with the resources they needed for whatever choices they made growing up.

Morris was deeply religious his whole life, but never dogmatic. He was a founding member of the New Creation Christian Church, at which he made friends with whom he remained the rest of his life. He and his family next belonged to West Heights United Methodist Church. After his children moved away, He and Suzanne shifted their membership to Lorraine Avenue Mennonite Church.

He was a longtime member of Rolling Hills Country Club where he enjoyed hours of camaraderie with other golfers, serving as the club’s attorney for several years. He was an avid sports fan, holding season tickets to the Wichita Wings and faithfully following the Royals, Chiefs, Jayhawks, and Shockers.

Morris is preceded by his parents and his younger brother, Richard. He is survived by his wife, Suzanne; one brother and two sisters; his son, Matthew Birch and Kelly Birch and their children, Jeffrey, Adam, and Ryan; his son, Andrew Birch and Kerry Birch and their children, Faith and Liam; and his daughter, Elizabeth Gibson and Bradford Gibson and their children, Makenzie, Lauren, Ashley, Hunter, and Isabella.

Given the ongoing danger of COVID-19, the family is unable to hold a proper service at this time. The family hopes to have a celebration of Mo’s life this summer, after vaccines are available and allow people to once again gather safely. Memorials may be sent to either Lorraine Avenue Mennonite Church or the Parkinson’s Association of the Plains, PO Box 771269, Wichita, KS 67277.

Memories

Morris Dean Birch

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John Morton

December 6, 2020

I have fond memories of Morris when we were classmates at Wichita South; his contributions there and in later years will be remembered by many. I wish comfort and peace for his family during this time of loss during difficult and challenging circumstances.

Ellen House

December 5, 2020

Dear Birch family - we are so sorry to learn of Mo’s passing. He was a true delight and will be missed. May your many memories and God’s peace comfort you.

Steve and Ellen House

Karl Swartz

December 5, 2020

So sorry to hear this. One thing I always valued was Mo’s sense of humor. A year or two ago Mo had an episode at church that turned out to be caused by low blood sugar. The EMT was asking him questions to assess his alertness. In response to the question “Who’s the President of the United States?” Mo immediately replied, “I don’t want to say.” Knew then he was going to be fine.

Nancy Coup

December 5, 2020

I will always remember Morris helping my late husband and I through the air traffic control strike. He used his skills and intelligence to save my husband’s career. Forever Grateful to Morris!!!!!! Fondly, Nancy Coup

Larry Phillips

December 4, 2020

Suzanne, I am so sorry for your loss of Morris. I know that your heart aches for him. I pray that God will comfort you in the days ahead, that your family & friends will keep you in their prayers also, that they will not shy away from talking about Morris with you because he was not only a good man but he will always be with you and now will be watching over you.

Your Friend Larry Phillips

Dennis Halloran

December 4, 2020

Mo will be missed, but left a great legacy of Family First. His extended family were the beneficiaries of caring and giving. Let us all remember his journey.

FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY