With an emphasis on growth and innovation, Gov. Pete Ricketts proposed providing property tax relief, creating new and better-paying jobs, easing regulatory burdens and increasing educational opportunities in his State of the State Address to lawmakers Jan. 22. Ricketts said he relied on his private sector background when crafting the state budget, which would restrict spending growth to 3 percent over the biennium, down from 6.5 percent during the previous biennium. This savings, combined with the state’s annual 5 percent revenue growth rate, Ricketts said, would help taxpayers afford more goods and services, further growing the state’s economy.
Thirty-seven Nemaha County residents were named to the Dean’s List for the fall 2014 semester at Peru State College. To qualify for the Dean’s List, students must have a grade point average (GPA) of 3.5 or higher, have completed at least 12 college credit hours and have no incomplete grades for the semester. Those students earning a four-point GPA for the semester are noted with an asterisk (*) following their name. Students are listed by hometown, with class standing.
Catherine Davison of Auburn placed in two events Friday and Saturday, Jan. 16 and 17, at the Holiday Inn Invitational at the Bob Devaney Sports Center indoor track. Davison, a 2013 Auburn High School graduate, is a 5’2” sophomore distance runner for the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) Mavericks. She ran 10:36.86, seventh in the 3,000 meter run and was on the seventh place distance medley team which ran 12:44.02. The Mavericks placed seventh among eight teams in Lincoln.
The Johnson-Brock Lady Eagles split two home games the next to last week of January. Tuesday night, Jan. 20, the Lady Eagles defeated Lewiston, 48-30. Friday night, Jan. 23, the Johnson-Brock girls lost 37-68 to Friend. The Lady Eagles took a 7-6 record to a Tuesday night, Jan. 27, home contest against the Auburn Bulldogs, who enter the game with a 6-10 record.
Sylvia Nadine Dirksen of Auburn, Nebraska, was called to her heavenly home to be with her Lord on January 13, 2015 at the age of 79. Sylvia became ill before Thanksgiving, but God found a way to let her family share a last Christmas together. Sylvia was the oldest daughter of Herman F. Warnke and Myrl F. (Ashcraft) Warnke of Tecumseh, Nebraska. She and her sister Carolyn helped with the family grocery store while growing up. She graduated from Tecumseh Public Schools in 1953, where she met her husband Les Dirksen. Sylvia was baptized on May 7, 1939 and later confirmed on August 26, 1952 at St. John Lutheran Church in Tecumseh. She belonged to various church organizations at St. John and later joined Trinity Lutheran Church in Auburn when she and Les moved there in 2010. On December 4, 1955 Sylvia was united in marriage to Leslie R. Dirksen. Les was a farmer, and Sylvia had a lot to learn! She loved retelling stories of the mistakes and successes of their early farming years. Les and Sylvia were blessed with two sons, Terry and Don. Together the family farmed near Johnson, Nebraska and enjoyed taking care of the livestock and the land. Les and Sylvia resided on the same farm for 50 years until they moved to Auburn. Through the years, Sylvia also took on extra jobs in town. She was a life member of the Johnson American Legion Auxiliary and belonged to the County Extension Club. During her free time she enjoyed bowling, gardening, and entertaining any visitor who happened to stop in. All were welcomed, especially if they would stay and play a game of cards! Some of her family’s best times were spent around the table, whether eating a great meal or playing games. Sylvia loved traveling with Les and their sons’ families as often as possible. Sylvia was preceded in death by her parents, Herman and Myrl Warnke and her sister Carolyn Foetisch. She is survived by her husband of 59 years, Les; her sons Terry and his wife Becky of Clarinda, Iowa; and Don and his wife Cheryl of Kearney, Missouri. Grandchildren are: Mitch, wife Shannon, and son Parker from Kansas City, Mo.; Jessica, husband Cody, children Carson, Blake, and Paige from Pocahontas, Iowa; Tyler from Lawrence, Kansas; Kelsey from Bakersfield, California; and Matthew, Sarah, and daughter Stella from Maryville, Mo.; and many, many dear family and friends. Sylvia lived for her faith, family, and friends. A funeral service was Saturday, January 17, 2015 at Trinity Lutheran Church in Auburn, officiated by Rev. Jonathan Rathjen. Kelsey Dirksen and Jessica Bunda were readers. Special hymns by the congregation were accompanied on the organ by Joan Wittmann. Casket bearers were Mitchell Dirksen, Tyler Dirksen, Matthew Dirksen, Kevin Watteyne, Bill Baird, and Steve Dirksen. Burial was in Spring Creek Cemetery near Tecumseh.