Merrill Emmett Blackman, age 91, died Sunday, May 13, 2012, at the Valley View Good Samaritan Center where he had been residing since 2005.
He had been a resident of Wamego for the past seven years.
He was born on Nov. 6, 1920, in Stanford, Mont., the son of Leo Revere and Hulda Elizabeth (Schmitt) Blackman. The family moved to McPherson in 1924 where he graduated from McPherson High School in 1938 and attended two years at McPherson College. He had a love for music having played clarinet in the high school and piano in a dance band in high school and college. From 1940 to entering in the army in 1942, he started his education at Kansas State, worked in Great Falls, Montana and then in McPherson, Kan.
In the army he served in the 348th Engineering General Services Battalion then later in the 233rd Combat Engineering Battalion deployed to the Pacific theater. Master Sergeant Blackman participated in four combat landing operations as an Army Transport Quartermaster, and supervised the construction of roads, bridges and airports much under combat. He received the bronze star for meritorious service. Following the war, he returned to Kansas State receiving a B.S Architectural Engineering degree in 1949.
He lived in Salina from 1949-1965 where he was employed by Wilson & Company, Engineers and Architects, and held various positions including managing construction projects.
On June 18, 1951, in Salina, he was united in marriage to Lois Marie Johnson. They divorced in 1992 and she would precede him in death in 2000.
Mr. Blackman moved to Manhattan in 1965 where he accepted a position at Kansas State University. He developed and taught numerous new courses and was a founding faculty member of the Construction Science curriculum now within the Dept. of Construction Science and Architectural Engineering.
Merrill was a member of the First Presbyterian Church of Manhattan and former member of the Manhattan Kiwanis Club.
He is survived by his son, Bradley Kent Blackman of Pittsboro, Ind. and a grandson, Adam Joshua Schlub of Charlotte, N.C.
Funeral services were held June 2, 2012, at the First Presbyterian Church, Manhattan, with Reverend R.C. McConnell officiating. Interment followed in the Sunrise Cemetery.
On-line condolences may be left for the family through the funeral home website located at www.ymlfuneralhome.com.
Memorial contributions may be made to the KSU Foundation for the Merrill Blackman Construction Science Scholarship Fund. Contributions may be left in care of the Yorgensen-Meloan-Londeen Funeral Home, 1616 Poyntz Avenue, Manhattan, Kansas 66502.