Dr. James Bernard PretzOctober 10, 2017
Dr. James Bernard Pretz was a loving father, grandfather, great-grandfather, uncle, brother and a well - respected physician. He was a devout Catholic and lived his faith to the fullest. He died peacefully at the age of 93 on October 10, surrounded by family members. He was comforted in his last hours, as those at his bedside prayed the Rosary.
Dr. Pretz was born in 1924 in Kansas City, Kansas. He enjoyed sixty-one years of marriage to Bernadine Frances until her death in 2008. Together they had four children. He was pre-deceased by both of his sons: Stephen, married to Norma Pretz of Spokane, Washington; and John, married to Joanne Pretz of Manassas, Virginia. He is survived by his daughters Ann Faison (Sandy) of Eagle, Colorado, and Barbara of Shawnee, Kansas. He is also survived by his brother, John (Rosemarie) of Mexico, Missouri.
Several generations of people, including members of the religious community, were cared for by Dr. Pretz in his forty-two years as a family practitioner in Kansas City, Kansas. His compassionate manner endeared him to his many patients. His children reported that no matter where they went, they would inevitably run into someone who had been delivered by their father. He received his medical degree from the University of Kansas in 1947 after graduating from Bishop Ward High School in 1941 and St. Benedict’s College in Atchison, Kansas in 1944. He participated in the Navy V-12 Service program and was a Captain in the U.S. Army Medical Corps during the Korean War.
Many religious organizations benefited from Dr. Pretz’s participation. He served as a lector, Eucharistic Minister and choir member at St. Patrick’s Church and was president of the Serra Club for several years. He was a Fourth Degree Knight of the Knights of Columbus and a Knight Grand Cross of the Knights of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem. Dr. Pretz was involved in many community organizations as well, including Optimist International, which named him a Distinguished President and a Distinguished Governor.
Dr. Pretz was graced with a warm sense of humor and was a lively conversationalist. As promised, he was never bored in retirement. He loved to travel and took many cruises with Bernadine, looking forward not only to seeing new places but to playing duplicate bridge each evening. They also spent many hours on the road and in the air, attending the Baptisms, Confirmations, and weddings of their grandchildren. But books were his passion, especially those on military history and aviation (he was a private pilot for twenty-two years). Nothing gave him greater pleasure than losing himself in a book, with nary a television or computer in the house to distract him. Dr. Pretz was an active alumnus of Bishop Ward High School and St. Benedict’s College, and a staunch pro-life advocate.
Visitation will be held at the Mary Butler Meyers Funeral Home at 6300 Parallel Parkway in Kansas City, Kansas from 4:00 to 7:00 pm on Sunday, October 15, 2017. The funeral Mass will be at 10:00 am on Monday, October 16, 2017 at St. Patrick’s Church, 1086 North 94th Street, Kansas City, Kansas. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to The Pretz Family Scholarship at Benedictine College ; Office of Advancement, 1020 North Second Street, Atchison, KS. 66002.
The Pretz Family Scholarship at Benedictine College
Office of Advancement, 1020 North Second Street, Atchison KS 66002