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Carolyn K. Besa

Carolyn K. Besa Carolyn K. Besa, age 77, of Manhattan, died Friday April 17, 2020 at her home in Manhattan.

Carolyn K. Fortner was born on August 14, 1942, the daughter of Milton and Lillian Fortner of Manhattan. She grew up in Manhattan, she worked many jobs while growing up. She helped her mother at the Fraternity with the cooking. Also, she worked taking in laundry and babysitting the neighborhood kids. Then she worked at a burger shop on Poyntz and there she met the love of her life, Rudy Besa. She always told the story of how she poisoned the burger for love. Carolyn went to work for the Riley County Extension Service, visiting homes to help families plan healthy meals.

After graduated high school she attended secretary school and she was hired at Irwin Army Community Hospital. She retired from there after 40 years.

On March 26, 1960, she was united in marriage to Rudy Besa in Manhattan, Kansas. They recently celebrated 60 years together.

During her lifetime she loved to travel. She and Rudy traveled to Australia, Germany, Alaska, and enjoyed 3 cruises. Carolyn also enjoyed crocheting, reading books, working on puzzles and baking cookies. When the holiday season came, she would invite single soldiers for dinner, because she always said “we have room for more”.
She was preceded in death by her parents, an infant son, a grandson, her sister Patricia, and her son Juan.

Carolyn is survived by her husband Rudy, her sister Sarah “Sally”, and together her and Rudy had 5 children: Juan “John” Besa (deceased) and his wife Lacy, of St. George, Brenda Emory, of Manhattan, Greg Besa and his companion, of Kansas City, Kansas, Tony Fortner and his wife Kathie, of Morganville, Kansas, and Patty Harris and her husband Mark, of Cuba, Missouri; also her grandchildren, Justin, Miranda, Tamara, Jesse, Mitchell, Shelby, Matthew, Mellissa, Melony, Sydney, Allison, and Gwendolyn, and great-grandchildren: Dustin, Brandon, Michael, Dallas, Lexi, Damian, Breighton, Hazel, Mason, Traci and Emma.

Family and friends may call on Wednesday April 22, 2020 from 11:00 a.m. until 8:00 p.m. at the Yorgensen-Meloan-Londeen Funeral Home, to sign the guest book and pay their respects.

A private family service will be held at the Valley View Memorial Park in Manhattan.

In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be made to the Riley County Seniors’ Service Center in Manhattan. Contributions may be left in care of the Yorgensen-Meloan-Londeen Funeral Home, 1616 Poyntz Avenue, Manhattan, Kansas 66502.

Online condolences may be left for the family through the funeral home website at

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