Mark Runge, who was an architect and director of facilities for more than three decades at Emporia State and had become one of the most familiar and helpful faces on campus, died Monday, Sept. 16, 2019. He was 62. 

In an emailed message to faculty and staff, President Allison Garrett said Runge’s death was sharply felt on campus. 

“(The) sudden loss of a friend, co-worker or loved one is never easy,” Garrett said. “As hard as Mark’s passing is on all of us, we know that it will be even harder for Mark’s family—his wife, Cathy, their two sons and their families. Please keep all of them in your prayers during this difficult time.” 

ESU flags across campus will be at half-staff to honor Runge this Saturday. 

Runge was born in Hebron, Nebraska, in 1956, the son of William E. and Gwendolyn (Thompson) Runge. He married Catherine Kieffer in Belleville, Kansas. on Aug. 13, 1983. She survives. Other surviving family members are sons Erik Runge, Wichita, and Kyle Runge, Olathe; his, brother; Bob Runge, Newton; a sister, Cynthia Runge, Emporia; and three grandchildren, Eloise, William and Claire Runge. 

He was preceded in death by his parents and a brother, Tom. 

Runge received his associate degree from Cloud County Community College and a bachelor’s of science in architecture from Kansas State. For 32 years, he had been architect and director of facilities at ESU. 

Runge was a member of the Didde Catholic Campus Center and the Knights of Columbus, and was a board member of Emporia Main Street. 

Memorials have been established with the Didde Catholic Center and the Emporia State University Foundation, according to Roberts-Blue-Barnett Funeral Home. 

A rosary was recited in Runge’s memory at 6:30 p.m. Sept. 20, at the Didde Catholic Campus Center, 1415 Merchant St. 

A funeral mass was held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 21, at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, 101 Cottonwood St. The family requested no flowers. Online condolences may be posted on the Roberts-Blue- Barnett Funeral Home website, 

(1) comment


Thank you for this. What a great guy.

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