Denise E. Gum, 65, of Topeka, KS, passed away on Monday, December 4, 2017 surrounded by her family.
She was born March 26, 1952, in Salina, Kansas, the daughter of James and Wilma "Patsy" (Pickard) Martin. She was a graduate of Topeka High school.
Denise was self-employed and owned A Friend in Kneed massage business. She was a member of KATMB (Kansas Association of Therapeutic Massage & Body Work) and Free State Coalition (advocates freedom from state licensure for Massage Therapy).
Denise married Ronald L. Gum on July 19, 1969 in Topeka, KS. He survives. Other survivors include a daughter, Jennifer Gum-Fowler (Chad Fowler) of Kincaid, KS; grandchildren, Ariel Gum, Joshua Fowler, and Derrick Fowler; brothers, David E. Martin and Douglass E. (Kimberly) Martin; a niece Christina (Martin) Barnett and Nephews James David Martin, Rodney Clark, Nick Clark, Michael Martin, and Andrew Martin.
She was preceded in death by her parents; and a son, Jeremy L. Gum.
Denise was very passionate about advocating for freedom from state licensure for massage therapists and started the Free State Coalition. She was an avid hockey fan. She volunteered at Topeka Civic Theater for many years. She also enjoyed pre-1840 re-enacting, pre-1840 needlework and spending time with family.
A funeral Ceremony will be held at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, December 9, 2017 at the Penwell-Gabel Mid-Town Chapel, 1321 SW 10th Ave., Topeka. Cremation will follow the ceremony. Denise will lie in state after 3:00 p.m. on Friday, at the funeral home where the family will receive friends from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Let's Help, Inc. 200 S. Kansas Avenue Topeka, KS 66603 or United Way Christmas Bureau, 1315 SW Arrowhead Road, Topeka, Kansas 66604.
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