Cara Lee Hataway, Jr., 87, of Leawood, Kansas, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, May 5, 2020 at the Kansas City Hospice House. Cara was born in Kansas City, Kansas on January 27, 1933. He was the second of two sons born to Cara “Pat” Lee Hataway and Minnie Lee Hataway.
Our dad will be greatly missed and is survived by a loving family including his wife of thirty-one years, Barbara; his daughter Deborah Lynne Hocevar and her husband John; his daughter Shawn Rene Laitner and her husband Doug; his son Cara “Butch” Hataway and his wife Lee Anne; his daughter Sue Ann Payne and her husband Ray. He is also survived by eleven adoring grandchildren; John Hocevar, Sarah Jordan, Bradley Hocevar, Max, Alex and Hannah Laitner, Justin, Elise and Evan Hataway, Aimee and Brittany Scott and eight great-grandchildren; Grey, Poppy, Kenadi, Kaidence, Ryan, Samuel, Brayden and Kara.
Cara Lee was born and raised in Kansas City, Kansas. He was baptized at First Baptist Church of Kansas City Kansas, the same church where his parents first met. “C.L.” graduated from Wyandotte High School in Kansas City, Kansas with the class of 1951. He was a proud Bulldog who, decades later, looked forward to lunch dates with his old classmates. Cara married Marilyn Elise Holt on February 14, 1954 and together they had four children. Cara served in the Army during the Korean War. He was stationed in Heidelberg, Germany where Marilyn later joined him. It was in Heidelberg where their first daughter Debbie was born. Upon completion of duty from the Army, Cara returned home to Kansas City, Kansas and eventually joined his parents and brother Jim in the family business, “Hataway Electric Motor Service”. On May 21, 1988 Cara married Barbara Jane Jaspersen in Dallas, Texas. They resided in the Kansas City area. Barbara was Cara’s constant companion, friend and love. Together they shared travel, fun, family and now memories.
If you met our father one-time, you were his friend for life. Even when he didn’t see you for many years, he would remember your name and something important about you. Dad appreciated meeting new people and loved to interact with total strangers. In a restaurant a bar or anywhere in public he was always “running for mayor”, saying hello and shaking hands. In conversations with a new friend it wasn’t long before they realized they knew someone in common. This natural gift of connecting with people usually added to another one of his small world stories he loved to share with us. Growing up, our friends thought of him as “the cool dad”. He was “young” (or so they thought), handsome, a sharp dresser, charming, friendly, funny and charismatic. To us, he was dad. He was a dad who tried his best to succeed and one who was always thinking of his children and hoped one day they would have a better life. Grandpa Cara loved all things sports, including anything Jayhawk, everything KC Chiefs, the PGA Tour and especially The Masters. Barbara certainly helped to fuel his enthusiasm, often scheduling dinner and family get-togethers around a sporting event. Of course, more than anything, Cara loved his family and his family loved him.
Preceding Cara in death were his parents, “Pat” and Minnie and his brother James D. Hataway.
A celebration of life service for Cara will be at a later date when the current restrictions are lifted. In the meantime, put on your favorite Jayhawk or Chiefs apparel and pour a glass of Famous Grouse on the rocks with a splash, in his memory. He would love it. Arrangement for cremation and internment are being made by Johnson County Funeral Chapel. The family will cherish your shared memory of Cara. Please go to www.johnsoncountychapel.com