All U.S. and Nebraska flags are to be flown at half-staff to honor the victims of the coronavirus pandemic until sunset Friday, Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts announced Tuesday.
The move was made in accordance with a
proclamation from the White House.
Monday evening, President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden participated in a moment of silence to mark the deaths of more than 500,000 Americans who have died of COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus.
In the proclamation, Biden said the nation must remember those who have died "so we can begin to heal, to unite, and find purpose as one nation to defeat this pandemic."
Nebraskans lost to COVID-19
“He has built generations of kids, and if we do our job right, we pass that on, his legacy.”
"If people needed anything, even if they just needed a good idea, she was the one they relied on," her daughter said.
"That just meant if we went sledding at the park, he was right in the middle of everything," she said. "If we had a red wagon, he would push us so hard we'd fall over. Yes, we got a lot of skinned knees, but he'd kiss it and make it feel better."
"Before Covid, every Sunday that she was off, dinner was at Daphne's house," Traci said. "Daphne loved to dance and sing. She would also take the entire family to the Amazing Pizza Machine for Christmas."
“That was Dad,” Dave Dibben said. “He cared so much more about others. That’s what made him an outstanding parent and an outstanding teacher.”
After his death, Michelle Cook found one last text on his phone that he hadn't sent: "Tell the kids I love them, and I love you, too."
Denver Schmadeke served as an Omaha firefighter for more than 30 years. He and his wife would have celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in January. He died Dec. 26.
Kane devoted his career to public education in Missouri Valley, most notably as a middle school principal. He officiated thousands of football and basketball games, earning induction into the Iowa Officials Hall of Fame in 2002.
Donald and Marie Stoltenberg
The last thing Donald Stoltenberg said to his wife of 69 years before she died of COVID-19 on Nov. 21 was that he’d be with her soon. He died four days later.
"She was very caring, she always had time for us," Deb Miller said. "She was always willing to pass along information on her hobbies and took an interest in ours."
Bellevue Public Schools Superintendent Jeff Rippe said Kumor served on the school board for “all the right reasons.” “He truly cared and did everything he could, financially and emotionally, to support our students and staff,” Rippe said.
“Reach out to your neighbor. Love one another. Take care of each other during this scary time.”
Peterson worked in IT for most of his life, and then as a custodian at Abbott Elementary. He enjoyed riding motorcycles, playing cribbage, cooking and fixing things at his home and the Post.
Helen Jones Woods
“My mother was always an activist,” Hughes said. “She saw herself as an underdog, trying to climb out of her environment and circumstance. And she believed that along the way, you take someone with you.”
In the procession to Fynbu’s gravesite at Lincoln Memorial Park, he rode in the rumble seat in his ‘32 Deuce — one last ride in his dream car.
“He loved working with young people,” his wife Beth McGrath said. “He touched so many kids and had such an impact on them. He has a favorite T-shirt that says, ‘I yell because I care.’”
Joel A. Watts
“He really enjoyed life, even the smallest thing could be an adventure,” Lois Watts said.
“There were flowers in the house and flowers outside,” he said. “Lots of pots and flowers all over the place. She liked the perennials — not the annuals.”
The Nebraska State Patrol remembers Lt. Ken Dahlke as “a great man and a great role model for the many troopers he worked with who carry on the legacy of dedication to public service.”
Hopper was honored in December of last year and wrote a report about his career in which he described changes he had seen in information technology. “What a wild ride it has been!” he wrote.
She was a rules official for 16 U.S. Women’s Opens, 11 U.S. Women’s Amateurs, two men’s U.S. Opens and the 2013 U.S. Senior Open in Omaha, a British Women’s Open and a men’s U.S. Amateur.
“Dr. Lamberty was loved and respected by all who worked with him,” said Mel McNea, Great Plains Health chief executive officer. “His presence on our medical staff and in the community will be missed. He was a visionary, a mentor and a friend to many. He truly loved practicing medicine and serving his patients, and it showed.”
Lydia and Carlos Tibbs
“The Tibbses are beautiful people,” said Alexander, who was married to Carlos Tibbs for five of the 10 years they were together. “They covered you with their love.”
Merlene Hughes’ friends sometimes jokingly called her “The Bookie” because of her penchant to want to place a bet on just about anything.
“He cared so much about his family,” Kristen said. “He has a very large family of brothers and sisters and cousins who he was very close to.”
“He should be here,” she said. “I thought he would dance with my daughters at their weddings some day. I thought we'd get to have him until he was a feisty, gray-haired 95-year old.”
“We were waiting for the perfect time and the perfect place to get married, but we weren’t real worried about setting a date. We thought we had forever,” Moeller said.
"He had just become a grandfather, and he should have had many more years with us and his newborn granddaughter but those years were cut short," Ryan said.
Pedro Garcia III
“When our grandpa died, he was the one who was cheering everyone up, telling everyone stories,” Pierro said. “He made everyone smile and laugh.”
"She didn't have any issues in the whole world until COVID hit her," Stoj said. "I just plain miss her."
“I can find comfort in the countless stories of how Dad’s life and work decisions were made from his heart first. It’s that heart that brought him closer to God.”
Robert M. Fausset
It was his sense of humor and “big goofy smile” that Anita Kunken loved most about Robert “Bob” Fausset.
Robert Puhalla Sr.
Puhalla, a U.S. Army veteran who was 73, was at the church seven days a week. He often delivered the homily at daily Mass, which begins at 7 a.m.
“He was truly trying to make up for the lost time,” she said. “I think of my upcoming college graduation. I'll be the first grandchild to graduate from college, and he won't be there.”
"Her life was dedicated to her family and loved ones. She would always say to me, 'You give me life,' and I finally understand what she meant by that. She lived for us. For her large, growing family, and she continues to live on in each one of us."
“We called him papa,” said granddaughter Emily Wehnes. “He was always interested in anything we were doing."
“You know how there’s always a glue in the family?” she said. “He’s our glue. So now we have to just try extra hard to be sticky.”
“He’d had 30 jobs from age 11 to the time he became a physician,” Sean said. “I think the whole family shares these really amazing memories of camping with him and having adventures with him.”
Over the years as Wayne drove his delivery route for an agriculture company, regular customers learned that a delivery from Wayne frequently came with a half-hour conversation.