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Omaha couple strives to teach grandchildren importance of giving back through Goodfellows donation

Omaha couple strives to teach grandchildren importance of giving back through Goodfellows donation

Take a look at the top photos from 2020 as captured by the photojournalist of the Omaha World-Herald

Deborah and Dan Gilg always tried to stress to their children the importance of giving back.

In addition to Christmas presents, their kids each got a set amount of money. Then, as a family, they went to the grocery store to shop. Their purchases went to churches for distribution to those in need.

Now, the Gilgs are hoping to instill that charitable nature in the next generation.

Last year, the Omaha couple made a $600 donation to Goodfellows, The World-Herald’s charity, in honor of their six grandchildren.

The kids, who range in age from 15 months to 6 years old, still will find presents under the tree from their grandparents. But the donation is a way to teach them about giving back to the community.

“Even though they can’t appreciate it at the moment, we hope that as we continue, they will be aware of it and can look back at the contribution, or their parents can impress upon them that this is something you do,” Deborah Gilg said.

The Gilgs have given to Goodfellows in the past. Deborah Gilg, a lifelong Nebraskan and former U.S. attorney for the District of Nebraska, said she grew up reading The World-Herald.

“I think Dan and I have always been impressed with the work Goodfellows does, particularly at Christmastime. Now more than ever, we have lots of families that are in need,” she said.

Goodfellows, which has now partnered with United Way of the Midlands, offers one-time emergency aid for local residents struggling with unforeseen expenses.

Growing up, Gilg said, neither she nor her husband experienced lavish Christmas holidays.

“It wasn’t like it is now with multiple decorations and trees and multiple gifts. That simply wasn’t financially possible,” Gilg said. “We both had a great growing-up, but there wasn’t a lot of money.”

Goodfellows donations


In memory of Carl Riley Brodersen


In honor of health care workers – Anonymous


Dr. C.C. and Mabel L. Criss Memorial Foundation




On behalf of Broadmoor Apartment Communities and the employees in our Broadmoor Family; In memory of Donald R. and Margaret D. Torpy, Jack and Neta Jensen, Mark R. Torpy, and Gordon R. Hauptman – Stephen and Jacqueline Torpy; anonymous


Independent Roofing Co.


The Slosburg Company


In memory of Maurie and Craig Cullen; Linda K. and Nelson Gordman Donor-Advised Fund; anonymous


From the staff of Omaha South High School


Diane Paustian; In memory of Connealy—LeMaster Families


In honor of all the non-citizen United States military veterans who served our country in the line of fire and were then deported by the Trump Administration – John and Kathleen Walburn


In loving memory of Michael Pryor, Eddy Iwerson; The Prince Giving Fund; Mike and Kathy P.; In loving memory of Father McMahon; In loving memory of David Shaffar; In loving memory of Jack Daly/Nic Caguioa/Fred Arkoosh/Jeff Contant; From an anonymous old couple; In memory of Mom Dad, Grandma Grandpa, Great GM and GP we miss you, lost in 2020. The Sackett Family


In memory of my husband—Anonymous


Melvin and Helen Allen; In gratitude for six wonderful grandchildren – Daniel and Deborah Gilg; In honor of our six grandchildren – Dennis and Mary Sellon


In honor of all veterans – past, present and future – Marilyn and Owen Jensen; In memory of Matthew Patrick Lieben – Anne and Jeff Lieben; In memory of Peggy Abts and Ron Abts – Bill Abts; As a memorial to my late husband, Eric Rix – Christine Rix; In memory of “my gal Sal” from Ed Malashock; Bonnie Austin; Bill and Mary Jo Dixon; KCV Charitable Fund; In honor of Richard, Norma and Carolee struggling with health issues – Shirley and John Beier; In honor/memory of our parents Bob, Mary, Dale, and Barb; In memory of Mark and Peggy Keber and Delores Howard; Gift from Ronald and Genene Bowen in memory of Ernest and Viola Stengel and Max and Vivian Bowen; In memory of Abe Bakhit from A. B’s 66; Debra and Jeff Suing; Ann Settles; In Memory of my friend Darin Cook – Robert Keith; anonymous


Lee and Jean Johnson


Mrs. And Mrs. Thomas Leonard, Mr. and Mrs. Matthew Cahill and the Safley family


In Loving Memory of SHOWMATS-Anonymous


In memory of Joseph W. Brennan


Diana Asher; In memory of Frank and Florence Kracl by Ed Kracl; In memory of Ed and Marie Torczon – Thomas Torczon; Robert and Deanna Cline; Steve and Marcia Pitlor Family Donor-Advised Fund; In memory of our 3 sons, Jeff, Jay and John – Jim and Sandy Hinchman; In memory of Clair, Roger and Gregg McCord (Dunlap, Iowa) From Marge McCord and Family (Bennington, NE); Peter and Joan Hill; Instead of giving family gifts we wanted to give to others during the virus. So many people are in need – The Bergstrom Family; In loving memory of John Lillie and Jamie Morehouse and Jim Bokowski – Caren Lillie; In memory of my sweet and loving son, Eric, whom I miss every day. – Alice Schumaker; anonymous


In loving memory of B.J. Dietz, Marge and Rudy Turek—Anonymous


In loving memory of our parents Bob and Helen Goldberg, our brother Steve, our grandson and nephew Christian Miller – Given by Judy and Randy Hokamp, Janice and Curt Frost, and Julie Hagden


Given in gratitude for all the caregivers – Joan and Dean Olander; In memory of Charlie D. Hill by Cindy and his family in Georgia – Cynthia Hadsell; In honor of deceased family members – Dick and Nancy Larson; In loving memory of our mom and dad Don and Marlyn March; Robert and Kathleen Keasling; Dale Koester; Ricardo and Debra Turner; In memory of our granddaughter, Addison Hestermann, from ‘Anna’ and ‘Boppo’; Tim Kautzman; In memory of my parents, Irv and Barb Holst, brothers, Rick and Ken Holst – Linda Nelson; In Memory of Ron Ingram, Monte and Ginny Malouf – Todd Malouf


In memory of my daughter Melissa – Betty Schrage


In memory of my wife Dorlene of 67 years and our daughter Joy – Wayne Luther




In honor of Omaha International Folk Dancer; In memory of Billie W. Weideman, Viola R. Gall, and Frank and Pat Gaeta – Mr. and Mrs. Gregory A. Weidman; In honor of great Grandchild Elliot Obi – Joyce Christensen; Horseless Carriage Club Omaha; In memory of Norbert Bojanski; In memory of Margie Thurber from her family; Steven and Claire Willoughby; To celebrate my children – Randy, Laraine, Rhonda, Diane and Steve from their grateful mother; In honor of our Omaha Family & Friends who we are missing – Debbie and Larry Josephson; In memory of James and Donna Archer and Melvin and Wilma Thompson (our parents) – Gary and Barb Archer; In memory of my wife Mary Schoenbohm and Gilbert and Helen Schoenbohm by Harold Schoenbohm; In memory of Chester and Grace Bennett by grandchildren; In memory of John R Snell from your family; Bruce and Susan Gregory; In memory of Ruth Mach – Alan Mach; Larry Swartzbaugh; Patricia Swartzbaugh; anonymous


For RLT/MHT Anniversary


Kent Christenson; In memory of Dr. Stephen A. Chartrand – Margie Chartrand; In memory of our parents Louise and Frank VanKat and Arlene Srengel; In memory of Mary Rita Ramsey-Jim and Jean Moline; Ann and Chris Ekholm; Steve Vallinch


In memory of Floyd and Helen Niedbalski – Peg and Bob Niedbalski


In memory of Earl, Nan and Vicki, Kate and Rob Schroeder – Anonymous


In loving memory of my husband Jeff Hayden – Given by Julie Hayden and son Joey


In memory of Marlene W. Hechtman by her family; In memory of my husband Bob Wollenburg by Judy Wollenburg from Gretna


Donated by The Social Studies Superwomen of Millard South; In Memory of Mike Acquazzino – Stephen Nye


In memory of Tony Prusha and Mel Black from Illa and Children and Grandchildren and Great Grandchildren


In memory of my daughter Leah Moore and granddaughter Alexis Moore—Jeanne Rubin


In memory of loved ones by Trudy Ortlieb—Louisville, NE


In loving memory of Tom and Margaret Livingston by Liz and Keith Malo


In memory of My mom, Rose Vrbanac, by Sally and Terry Rehmeier and family


Richard and Connie Behrens


Beverly and Timothy Richards; In memory of Jean Patterson – Sheree Patterson; In loving memory of Rick and Reece Isenberg – Ike and Donna Isenberg; In loving memory of my parents Ewing and Betty Croft – Sandra Croft Levermann; In memory of Judge Rudolph Tesar, Helen (Babi) Tesar and Patricia Kutilek by family.; In memory of Bill and Trudy Lippold, by Rudy and Judy Tesar; Terry Wagner; In memory of Robert Teal – Marilyn Teal; In memory of all our departed Post members – The American Legion Benson Post #112; In honor of the Ashland Park-Robbins Elementary staff for their hard work and dedication to our students and families this semester!; In memorial of Cork and Gerry Rogers – Thomas and Jean Lund; Jody and Neal Malashock Donor-Advised Fund; Leland Bauer; Michael and Marsha Farmer; Jeffrey and Mary Farnham; In memory of Bird and Marilyn—Anonymous; From Dave & Maggie; Judy Nekonchuk; In memorial of my loving husband who passed away since 12-18-2020; In lieu of Christmas gifts to my special sisters Connie and Tammy from Deanna; In memory of Sharon Sorrells – Norman Sorrells; Allen and Annika Weber; Paul and Diane Terkelsen; Raymond and Laurie Stuart; Rev. Roy and Mary Fox; Patricia and Gregory Solko; In memory of Deacon Joe Krajicek Jr. – Helen Krajicek; In memory of Charlott Ware – Frederick Ware; I celebrate the generosity of my parents, Richard and JoAnna Bristol of Superior, NE. They are lifelong givers! – Leesa Lawson; Robert and Peggy Price; On Behalf Of AJ, Vincent, Jaxton, Easton, Malia, Jayda, Stella and Ada. Love Coco and Jackie!; In honor of all veterans – Wayne and Joyce Brunz; In memory of the deceased Hobza and Zakrzewski family members; In memory of Sally Winn. She received a doll from Goodfellows when she was young – George Winn; Many blessings received in 57 years of marriage 12/28/1963 – Joseph and Susan Perina; Josephine and Raymond Peralis; Merry Christmas Alex! – Terese Rose; Ellen McFarland; Jolene and Steven Sorensen; Claire and W. Benton Copple, M.D.; David and Peggy Wolff; In memory of loved ones lost – Ron Hrabik; R. L. Roseberg; In memory of our parents. Rich and Jeanne Borcyk, Dee O’Brien and Charles O’Brien; In memory of David R. Young – Jeannette Young; In memory of Lynn Johnson – Patrick Murphy; anonymous; In memory of my brother, Mark Roper – Susan Tracy


In memory of my mom Betty Collett who would be 98 years old this year – Anne and Lee Cornell


In memory of Vic Hoelting – Barbara Barges


In honor of friends and co-workers – Connie Taylor


In memory of my wife Sodsai Ruhe love and miss you- Daniel Ruhe


In memory of Jeff-Kelsey and Allies’s father, Leo’s grandpa – Sandra Johnston; In memory of our mothers, Margaret McCarthy Dale and Nina Darlene Wallingford Merriweather; anonymous


In memory of Kenan—Grandpa and Grandma L


In remembrance of Virginia, my wife of 66 years – Gerald Kube


Donald and Ruth Tucker, 62 years of marriage


In loving memory of Gene V. McKenna Sr. from Donna


Jesus, the only gift the world can’t live without! Happy Birthday Jesus! Hayden and Halle, Tatum, Ava, Jack and John; On behalf of my grandchildren Tess, Kelsey, Luke and John


In memory of my brother, Scott Wilson, who passed away 12/03/2017 at the age of 54—Cyndi Palmer; In Memory of Victor and Audrea Parr & Al and Agnes Fosmer – Jim and Helen Fosmer


In memory of our son Randy – Fred and Alice Miller


In memory of my daughter, Larenda Marcel Ranney by Jeanine Caldarelli


In honor of Omaha International Folk Dancers – Catherine Rudin; On behalf of Carrie Freeman’s giving spirit – Vicki Freeman; In remembrance of our niece Jennifer Doty by Peggy and Larry Hovorka; In memory of Gene Miller – Audrey Miller; Carmella Pigneri; Michael and Lea Connealy; Theresa and Thomas Homan; Evelyn J. Goodman; Marilyn and Dr. David Arnold; In memory of Jack and Tim – Connie Lawson; In memory of Virginia Barajas – Judith Novak; Kathleen Hanna; In memory of J. Wallace Baird and Kenneth Braymen – Loui Braymen; Daniel Sieck; From the Bourne Family; In memory of Judy Currie Bentley – Kendall Bentley; Missy Ulrich; In memory of Christa Tracy – Warren and Marinell Garnatz; In loving memory of our family members who passed in 2020, mother Louis Wondercheck, Uncle Art Jarecke and brother and brother-in-law Ron Jarecke – Ron and Shar Wondercheck; Katherine Hoyt; Vicki and Ronald Olnhausen; Robert and JoAnn Chedester; In memory of Jacob and Josie Tex – Eleanore Tex; Richard and Karen Herkenrath; William and Patricia Wollenhaupt; Jane Ternus; Col. Ellis McClintick; Daniel Kramer; In Memory of Charles and Willa Hartley – Kelly Beccard; Our Loving Mom and Grandma, Mary Lou Turner ~ Lorri, Dan, Jake, Joey Sweetwood and Jenna McQuistan; Loving Sister and Aunt Pamela Turner Larsen ~ Lorri, Dan, Jake, Joey Sweetwood and Jenna McQuistan; Our Dear Dads and Grandfathers, Don Turner and Bob Sweetwood ~Lorri, Dan, Jake, Joey Sweetwood and Jenna McQuistan


In loving memory of our granddaughter Amanda Sullivan, we love and miss you – Grandma and Grandpa K; In memory of Michael Biers


In memory of Chris Stukenholtz from Ron and Deb Stukenholtz and Tim, Tabby & Charlotte (Charlie) DeSelm. May God Bless us all this Holiday Season.


From Father Christmas; Rosario and Willa Varga; In honor of all frontline health care workers – Ken Munzesheimer; Stanley and Eufracia Hein; In memory of Mary Lou Don Turner from little sister Patricia Edwards; Elena Glatte; Merry Christmas! Keaton, Karter, Karson, Isabelle, Jacob, Kyler, Jaxlyn and Mimi


On behalf of Adrieene and Ashley – Linda Foley


In memory of Dan, Rod and Cindy – Betty Burt; In honor of many years of friendship with Ann Davey – Marikay Schwaller; In honor of many years of friendship with Joan Scalzo – Marikay Schwaller


In memory of husband, Bob & mother, Doris Hayden by Gwen Polivka; James and Sally Wehbey; Marilyn Kircher; Paul McManis; In memory of our grandson, Dennis, by Paul and Rita Powell, Weeping Water; In memory of Vatsala – Janak Dave; In memory of Dee Stokes – Sandra Schoville; On behalf of Citizens affected by COVID in Omaha – Patrick McManus; In memory of Marcella Johannes from Larry and Kelley Kohler; In memory of Robert and Virginia Moriarty and Marvin and Juliamar Dunn—Michael and Barbara Moriarty; In memory of Doris Matsunami; anonymous


In memory of my daughter – Anonymous


On behalf of Alexis and Nicole – Linda Foley


In loving memory of our good friend Marjean Sutton, who lost her battle with COVID this year – Bill & Connie Bray


In memory of our parents Andy and Ina Hadenfeld, William and Gladys Haldeman from Bill and Lorraine Haldeman; Gordon and Sandra Kay Viner; In memory of my cousin, Janet Erskins – Diane Hart; In honor of Jan and Ray Dotzler—Anonymous


Dale Marx

John Kersico

Daily Total: $146,930.24

Campaign Total: $447,448.65

<&rdpStrong>The Goodfellows fund through the years</&rdpStrong>

Omaha World-Herald: Afternoon Update

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There’s no question that The World Herald’s Goodfellows charity is needed more than ever, said Shawna Forsberg of the United Way of the Midlands. Calls to her agency's helpline were up 105% from 2019.

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