Dennis D. Gerdes was born January 29, 1928 to Harold Thomas and Laura (Behrends) Gerdes on the family farm near Auburn, Nebraska. He was baptized and confirmed at St. John Lutheran (Stone) Church south of Auburn. He attended rural elementary school through the eighth grade, after which he worked the family farm.
Becky Lynn Nelson, one of three children of Russell and Margie (Gwathney) Nosler, was born April 30, 1958, in Brinkley, Arkansas. Becky grew up and attended school in Wheatley, Ark., graduating from Wheatley High School in 1976. Becky was very active in her high school. She served as president of her senior class, was a member of the Beta Club, Future Business Leaders of America, FHA, science club, WHSPA, and a member of the basketball team. After high school, Becky attended Arkansas State University at Jonesboro on a full-ride scholarship to play basketball.
Mervin Robert Geyer, only child of Robert and Lillie (Fritsch) Geyer, was born August 20, 1929 at Auburn, Nebraska. He was baptized September 15, 1929 by his grandfather Rev. E.F. Geyer and confirmed October 25, 1942 by Rev. H. Bents, both at St. James Lutheran (Long Branch) Church near Humboldt, Nebraska. Mervin attended Bratton Union School, graduating in 1947. He learned the value of hard work and money during summers of his high school years on a neighbor’s Case hay baler.
Vonne Lee Fugate, age 67, died Thursday, Feb. 6, 2020. She was born Oct. 12, 1952 to Lyle and Wilma Gilliland at Humboldt. She grew up on a farm near Humboldt and was active in 4-H, winning numerous state awards. In 1971 she graduated from Southeast Consolidated High School. Fugate became a registered nurse upon graduating from Nebraska Methodist College in Omaha in 1974. She earned her AAPC certification as a medical certified professional coder in 2017.
John Tolly Banks was born February 20, 1945 to Merrill and Camilla (Haskins) Banks in Lincoln, Nebraska. He grew up in Stella, Nebraska and graduated from Stella High School in 1963. John attended the University of Nebraska in Lincoln and then joined the United States Air Force in March of 1965.