Gene was born in Horton, Kan., on April 16, 1924. The family moved to Kansas City, Kan., in 1937 and he graduated from Wyandotte High School in 1942, thereafter serving in the U.S. Army during World War II, being honorably discharged in 1946.

He continued his education at the University of Kansas and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Education degree. Gene worked for the Kansas City Missouri Police Department as a parole officer for a short time, then taught for one year at Shawnee Mission East High School.

Next he returned to the University of Kansas and earned a Master of Science in Education degree in 1953. In 1957 he joined the faculty of Pratt Junior (now Community) College, where he taught literature courses for 33 years until his retirement in 1990.

Facing failing health, he moved to Hilltop Manor at Cunningham, where he lived for 17 years until his death early in the morning of April 6, 2013, 10 days before his 89th birthday.

Burial was in Chapel Hill Memorial Gardens, Kansas City, Kansas. He is greatly missed by family, friends and colleagues.