Randy Lee Speckmann was born to Edward and Wilma (Rippe) on August 14, 1955 in Tecumseh, Nebraska. He was baptized and confirmed at Martin Luther Church, rural Johnson, Nebraska. Randy grew up near rural Elk Creek. The youngest of five, he was an avid farmer and dog lover from a young age. Like many young boys he spent his summers putting up hay and getting into shenanigans while riding bikes with the neighbor boys. Some of Randy's fondest memories were of times spent with the numerous Speckmann and Rippe cousins over monthly birthday get-togethers and Christmas gatherings. Many of his teachers identified his strengths and weaknesses early telling Randy that they would take care of his school art projects and he should "just focus on math."
Come high school Randy would excel in basketball not only leading his team to many victories, but also attracting the eye of a beautiful cheerleader, Elaine. Randy's speed and handling were not just reserved for the basketball court; rather, he often tested the "guidelines" of speed limits throughout the county--a trait he happily passed on to Keri. Randy graduated as an Elk Creek Antler in the spring of 1973. Randy went on to hold numerous jobs, including a milk truck driver, semi-driver, bartender, and custom harvester. He married the love of his life in 1975. Randy & Elaine lived in rural Elk Creek and were the hosts of many late-night gatherings featuring a few cold beverages & Saturday Night Live.
Randy & Elaine moved from Elk Creek to the farm in 1978 where they would raise two daughters, Crystal and Keri, and built the family farm. Randy would find a new passion and many would say his ultimate calling in 1990 while attending the Worldwide College of Auctioneering in Mason City, IA in March of that year. From that first sale, where no one really knew what they were doing, to the current day, Randy and Elaine built a business staffed by close friends and family. The success of that 31-year business was built in part by Randy's activity in the community. He was a proud Antler Alumni participating in the annual Alumni plays, a one-time-never-again alumni football game, and the annual Elk Creek Road Rally. Randy came to know most of eastern Nebraska prior to his auction days playing fast pitch (and then slow pitch) softball, officiating high school basketball and football games, and eventually going on to coach girls’ basketball. When Randy and Elaine didn't have a sale, Randy thoroughly enjoyed pheasant and quail hunting with his Vizsla hunting dogs.
The business of farming, auctioneering, and raising a family brought him into many different roles. He served on the Johnson-Brock Board of Education for eight years, four of those as board president. He was also a member of the Auburn German Mutual Board and was active for many years in the Elk Creek Men's Club and Volunteer Fire Department. Most recently, Randy served on the Board of the Tecumseh Federal Bank. Randy also believed strongly in serving in the church. Growing up in a musical family, he loved singing in the church choir. He also served as a member and President of the Martin Luther Church council for many years and loved bringing the auction business and church together through the Martin Luther Church Consignment Auctions as well as post auction gatherings in the garage with fellow congregation members. Throughout it all, Randy's love for farming was unwavering. He took many lessons from his father and other family members and passed those down to his children and grandchildren. He was passionate about caring for his livestock and always grateful for the many mentors in the livestock community who helped guide him along the way. Following in the footsteps of those before him, Randy never missed an opportunity to teach those around him. From coaching MIT youth basketball teams to varsity girls’ basketball, mentoring and guiding budding auctioneers, and guiding his daughters through life's challenges and tribulations, Randy was "like a dad" to so many. Randy passed away March 18, 2021 and will deeply missed by all who knew him.
Randy is preceded in death by his parents, sisters and brother-in-law Vernel and Frank Schumacher and Elaine Schmiegelow, brother Dean Speckmann, cousin Laverne Speckmann, nephew Cory Stuart, parents-in-law, Glenn and Ellen Beethe, and numerous other family members and close friends.
He is survived by his loving wife and work partner, Elaine (Beethe) Speckmann, daughters and sons-in-law Crystal and Nathan Neihoff and grandsons Edward Jackson and William Jase and Keri and Chase Rasby and grandson Corbyn, sister and brother-in-law, Donita and Don Stuart, nieces Darcy and Shea Thompson, Julie and Eric Londeen and Gina and Randy Snearly, brother-in-law, Vernon Schmiegelow, nephews, Brent Schmiegelow and Heather Schmiegelow, Lee and Kylie Schumacher and Jay and Angie Schumacher and brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law, Randy and Glenna Bohling, Mike Beethe and Harlan and Lisa Beethe and numerous nieces and nephews and a host of friends and work colleagues.
Funeral services will be held at 2:00 pm. Monday, March 22, 2021 at the Martin Luther Church, rural Johnson, Nebraska with Rev. Ken Tubbesing officiating. The service will is available on the Wherry Mortuary/Wherry Monument Facebook page and also on the bottom of Randy's webpage.
Visitation will be held from 1:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m., with family greeting friends from 2-4 p.m. Sunday, March 21, 2021 at the Martin Luther Church, rural Johnson, Nebraska.
Memorials may go to the family’s choice.
Interment will be in the Martin Luther Cemetery, rural Johnson, Nebraska.
Online condolences may be left @ www.wherrymortuary.com.
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