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412 North 7th Street
GARDEN CITY, KS 67846
Phone: (620) 276-3219
Fax: (620) 276-2115
Coach Joe Slobko

Coach Joe W. "Mister Baseball" Slobko

Tuesday, August 11th, 1936 - Tuesday, May 5th, 2020
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Obituary

Coach Joe W. Slobko “Mister Baseball” died Tuesday, May 5, 2020 at his home in Garden City, Kansas. He was born August 11, 1936 in Oak Creek, Colorado the son of Frank Slobko, Jr. and Wanda (Miles) Slobko.

After high school, Coach Slobko attended and graduated in 1959 from Colorado State College in Greeley, Colorado where he earned a Bachelors Degree in Physical Education. He then served in the United States Army from October 1959 to August 1961 during the Korean War. He then attended and graduated in 1966 from Western State College in Gunnison, Colorado earning a Master of Arts Degree. Coach Slobko began his teaching carrier in Las Animas, Colorado where he taught and coached baseball from 1963 to 1975. He taught Psychology, Senior Social Studies, Typing, World History, Civics, Physical Education, Family Recreation, and General Business. In 1975, he moved to Garden City, Kansas where he served as a Professor and baseball coach at Garden City Community College until his retirement in 1997. While at Garden City Community College, Coach Slobko taught General Psychology, Abnormal Psychology, Human Relations, Fundamentals of Baseball, Physical Education-Baseball, and served as Chairman of the Psychology Department.

Throughout his college coaching carrier, Coach Slobko’s teams have placed first or second, thirteen times in the Western Sub-Regional Tournament. He was also named Region II Coach of the year three times. His entire coaching carrier consists of many honors which includes being selected by the Colorado Coaches Association as the Class AA Coach of the Year in 1969, 1972, & 1973; Selected by the Colorado Coaches Association as Colorado’s Baseball Coach of the Year in 1974; Selected by the National High School Athletic Coaches Association as District 6 Baseball Coach of the Year in 1974; Worked as an Associate Scout with the Kansas City Royals and the Cincinnati Reds; Articles published in the Coach’s Clinic Magazine and Juco Review; Sixteen players have been offered pro contracts in eight years; over 90% of his baseball players have continued their education; Graduates of the GCCC program have played at the University of Arizona, Kansas University, Kansas State University, the University of Arkansas, Texas Christian University, as well as many other colleges. He was a member of Tau Kappa Epsilon Fraternity; was named Who’s Who among College Professors; was inducted into the Broncbuster Hall of Fame in 2004; and inducted into the Kansas Hall of Fame in 2017. Upon his retirement in 1997, he finished his baseball coaching carrier at GCCC with a 782-358 record. Coach Slobko’s baseball jersey and number was also retired shortly after his retirement. Along with loving the sport of baseball, he later enjoyed the game of golf.

Survivors include three children Benny Slobko, Mickey Slobko, and Christy Duncan and their families. He is also survived by a sister Brenda Kay.

A private family service will be held at a later date. There will be no calling hours. The family suggests memorials be given to the Broncbuster Athletic Association, or to the Garden City Animal Shelter both in care of Garnand Funeral Home of Garden City.
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Private Condolence
MF

Mark G Foss

Posted at 09:24am
GCCC Baseball Games were a favorite activity of our family during the years we lived in Western, Kansas and have many good memories. Coach Slobko's Teams were fun to watch as his passion for coaching and baseball knowledge just added to the enjoyment of watching his teams play. My job later required me to work in Garden City commuting from Scott City each day. There were some long stressful days at work so would often stop by and watch the Busters practice. Coach Joe would always come by to visit during batting practice and we'd talk baseball. I always enjoyed hearing how he picked up strategies that would help win games over the years including his friendship with Billy Martin when Billy was managing the Denver Bears. I still remember Joe arranging an autograph session with former members of the St Louis Cardinals who had stopped in Garden City while on their way to Colorado for an Elk hunting trip. The Cardinals had became my favorite team when growing up near St Louis and to see so many of my baseball heroes again was a special gift to share with my children. I have a special baseball from the Cardinals and took it that day to add to the autographs already on it. I asked Joe if he would sign it and still remember the hesitant look he gave me after it had been signed by Hall of Fame members and said are you sure you want me to sign it? I assured him that I did and he signed right after Stan Musial. We moved from Western Kansas in 1993 and GCCC Baseball is still one of our fondest memories.
 
CS

Christy Duncan / Slobko Posted at 06:02pm

Thank you for sharing your memory! It means a lot to our family.
MS

Mary Chappel, RN, CCM CASE MANAGER, CERTIFIED JOB PLACEMENT SPECIALIST

Posted at 05:52pm
Joe was one of my favorite coaches when I worked @ GCCC. He was a great teacher, friend & coach. I was the College Health Nurse On Campus from 1980-87. I used to come & watch coach & his team practice every afternoon just in case someone got injured. Coach even let my sons watch & practice w/the team when they weren’t in school. One year I discovered we had a young baseball fan here in Garden City who loved to come to the games. He had Leukemia. Coach & the team did a fund raiser @ one of the games to give to his family to help offset medical expenses & let this young man throw out the first ball of the season. I was so proud of Joe & the team especially then. I was always proud of them. Joe knew how to pick the very best & treated them like family. Joe was the greatest in my book. My thoughts & prayers to your family during this sad time.
RS

Rohn A Shellenberger

Posted at 11:32am
"We don't walk to our positions, we don't jog to our positions, we sprint to our positions right out of the dugout. We'll beat the other team before we throw a pitch." Joe Slobko (circa Sept. 1977)
To this day, I remember Slob getting excited during a rally, he would stutter a little bit when he yelled "H,h,h,herego, Busters!"
RIP Slob
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