American Patriotic 11


Max Jay Austin

January 25, 1940 ~ May 15, 2018 (age 78)

Max Jay Austin, 78, of Arkansas City, KS, passed away on Tuesday, May 15, 2018 at the Kansas Veteran’s Home of Winfield, KS.

Cremation has taken place according to his wishes by Shelley Family Funeral Home of Arkansas City.  Private family services will be held at a later date.  Memorials have been established with the Kansas Veteran’s Home of Winfield and the Cowley County Humane Society.  Contributions may be made through the funeral home.  For more information or to send a condolence, please visit 

Max was born January 25, 1940, to Norman V. and Floy B. (Tennison) Austin in Stillwater, OK.  He was reared and educated in Arkansas City, graduating from Ark City High School in 1958.  After high school, he attended Ark City Junior College before joining the United States Air Force in 1960.   After he was honorably discharged from the U.S.A.F., he returned to Arkansas City in 1965 and opened the Townhouse Bar, while attending Southwestern College. 

In 1968, he married Lana Bechtel in Arkansas City.  There first home was in Hays, KS, where Max attended Ft. Hays State University to obtain his MBA.  After graduating, he went to work for Hartford Insurance, living in Connecticut, Chicago, Illinois and Phoenix, Arizona.  They returned to Arkansas City in 1976, when he became the owner of Sybrant, Munson and Austin Insurance and Real Estate Agency.  Max worked a long career in insurance.   After he retired from insurance, he worked for MAC Tools. 

Max loved fishing, boating, and working on old cars.   He was a “car guy” all his life.   He and friends started one of the first car clubs called the Gear Grinders in 1958.  

Surviving to honor his memory are his children, Aaron Austin and wife Lea of Shawnee, KS; Adam Austin of Arkansas City, sister, Ann Gray and husband Joe of Arkansas City, KS; ex-wife and friend, Lana Austin, nephew Mark Austin and nieces, Allison Lorey, Leigh Bradbury and Kelly Gray.  Max was preceded in death by his parents and brother, Alan Austin and wife Sharon. 

© 2019 Shelley Family Funeral Home. All Rights Reserved. Funeral Home website by CFS