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Robert E. “Bob” Lempka was born to Bernard and Agnes (Kerner) Lempka on December 30, 1927 on the family farm near St. Mary, Nebraska. His parents were decedents of farmers from Poland and Germany. Bob attended St. Mary Catholic School and later Tecumseh High School, graduating with the Class of 1946. He was baptized and confirmed in the Catholic faith and was a life-long member of the Catholic Church. Bob started flying when he was 16 years old and got his pilot’s license when he was 18. He flew until his marriage to Rosie. He passed away peacefully on October 12, 2023, surrounded by his family and close friends.
Bob enlisted in the U.S. Army and served during the Korean War from Dec. 14, 1950 to his discharge as a corporal on Nov. 25, 1952. He was stationed in Germany near the Rhine River.
He was married to Rosemarie Kramer on October 28, 1954 at the St. Mary Catholic Church in St. Mary, Nebraska. This union was blessed with four children, Daniel, Shirley, Terrance “Terry” and Robert “Bob”.
Bob was a farmer most of his life growing crops and raising livestock. He was very active in the Southeast Hog Association and followed in his father’s footsteps showing purebred hogs at the Nebraska State Fairs. He was also very active in the local 4-H group, being a leader for many years guiding his children and other children in showmanship. Other occupations Bob held were being an electrician, cement truck driver, drove the school bus for Tecumseh Public Schools for 5 years and ended his working career as a rural mail carrier for 18 years. He was a lifelong member of the Catholic Church and was a member of the Knights of Columbus. He especially loved to help with the Lenten fish fries. He was also a member of the Tecumseh Kiwanis Club. Bob was a 60+ year member of the Tecumseh VFW and served as commander for 5 years. For 3 years he was the all-state commander.
Bob loved life and lived it to the fullest! His enthusiasm for life was contagious to anyone he met. He was an inspiration to all. His motto was always, “Laugh every day! It isn’t a good day if you can’t make someone laugh!” And that he did! In his spare time, Bob loved playing cards, especially poker, hunting, fishing, putting together model airplanes, traveling with wife Rosie and watching football. In his younger days he loved ice skating and roller skating, but ballroom dancing was his all-time favorite. Bob thoroughly enjoyed coffee at the Action Center with his coffee group, hanging out at the Field-Ford garage and driving to the farm every day staying active. Bob never met a stranger. “Das ist gut!” "I'm the best Polack you'll ever meet!"
Bob is survived by his daughter Shirley Ulery and husband Greg of Wichita, KS, sons Terry Lempka of Bellevue and Robert “Bob” Lempka and wife Ann of Omaha, sister Donitta Straub and husband Dave of Lincoln, grandchildren, Derek and Sarah Lempka of Adams, Brandon and Stacy Lempka of Anchorage, AL, Sarah and Aaron Herd of Kingwood, TX, Andrew and Liz Lempka of Omaha, Erik Ulery of Emporia, KS, 8 great-grandchildren, brother-in-law, Pastor David Kramer and wife Marilyn of Smith Center, KS, sister-in-law, Sharon Lott and husband Leo of Geneva, nieces, nephews, other relatives and many friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents, son Daniel, his loving wife of 64 years, Rosemarie and brother Bernard.
Mass of Christian Burial Services will be held at 10:00 a.m. Tuesday, October 24, 2023 at the St. Mary's Catholic Church in St. Mary, Nebraska with Father Christopher Kubat officiating. The service was also livestreamed on the Wherry Mortuary Facebook page and the link to the livestream is now available at the bottom of Bob's webpage.
Visitation will be held from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday, October 23, 2023 at the Wherry Mortuary in Tecumseh, Nebraska. Rosary will be recited at 7:00 p.m. at the St. Mary's Catholic Church, St. Mary, Nebraska. The family will greet friends from 6-7 p.m. before the rosary at the church as well as after the rosary service is completed.
Memorials may go the family's choice.
Interment will be in the St. Mary's Catholic Cemetery, St. Mary, Nebraska, with full military honors by the Tecumseh VFW Post #8221, American Legion Post #2 and the Army National Guard Funeral Honors Team.
Online condolences may be left @ www.wherrymortuary.com.