Eugen F. Polka

Eugen (Gene) Polka, 80, of Kansas City, Missouri, lost his battle with cancer on July 7, 2012 at the Kansas City Hospice House.  He is survived by his wife, Ann (Joann Repp) of Kansas City, daughter Elizabeth Garvin and family of Denver, son James Polka and family of Raleigh, sisters Gina Sheppard and Mela Doerfer, and sister-in-law Erika Polka, along with their families.  A celebration of Gene’s life will be held in Bull Shoals, Arkansas, in the spring – fly rods are encouraged.  Donations to the Kansas City Hospice House are requested in-lieu of flowers.

Born in Melrose Park, Illinois, in 1932, Gene spent his early years in Erfurt, Germany, along with his parents, two sisters, and brother Martin.  After returning to the states, he grew-up in the Chicago area. Gene served in the U.S. Army as an intelligence officer during the Korean War.  Post-war, he attended the University of Illinois, majoring in chemical engineering, after which he spent most of his career in the plastics manufacturing industry.  He married Ann, of Tiffin, Ohio, in 1963 and following the adoption of their two children, Gene’s work moved them across the country on numerous occasions.  They lived in the Kansas City area in the early 1980s and retired back to KC in 2001. During his retirement, Gene enjoyed fly fishing, hunting, Royals baseball, and spending time with his grandchildren.  To the amusement of his family, he also puttered around the kitchen, pronouncing his recipes as having been “passed down from generation to generation and approved by the crowned heads of Europe.”  He will be greatly missed.


  1. marcus conklin on July 15, 2012 at 4:50 am

    I never had the opportunity to meet Gene but if he is anything like his Son he was a great Man. Thank you Gene for adopting , providing for, loving , and Fathering my brother. I will meet you on the other side of eternity!

  2. Bill and Nancy on July 13, 2012 at 9:10 pm

    Cheers Gene. You will always be very special to us great memories, great food ( less garlic sometimes ) great stories and hopefully NO MAHLER in heaven !!! :):):)

  3. Rita H. Carrolla on July 12, 2012 at 4:50 pm

    Rest in peace Gene. You and Ann raised two beautiful and accomplished children. You did your best.

    Gone fishing!

  4. Chris on July 11, 2012 at 5:05 am

    I am sorry for your loss.
    You and your family are in my prayers.


  5. Al Ballard on July 10, 2012 at 7:26 pm

    Love ya Gene! Thanks for being there for me when I needed you the most. You served your family and country with great honor. You have been a great role model for me and many others.

    Love, Al (AKA Ballard brat)

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