Ronald Ray Milner - May 14, 2009
Ronald Ray Milner was born Jan. 8, 1934 on the family farm near Haigler, Neb. to Lawrence Leonard and Ruby Irene (Roberts) Milner.
He passed away at his home in Imperial, Neb. on May 4, 2009.
Ron attended grade school at Prairie Gem and graduated from Chase County High School in 1951.
He married his high school sweetheart, Monna Kay Humphrey, on Aug. 7, 1953 in the United Methodist Church, the church where he was baptized and became a member. Monna and Ron had four children: Jerry, Rabecca, Debora and Linda.
Ron served in the army from 1954-1956 and was stationed in Germany. After returning from service he farmed for 10 years. Ron hesitantly gave up a career in farming and later became the manager of the Upper Republican Natural Resource District from which he retired after 25 years.
As manager of the URNRD Ron was instrumental in developing much needed water control reform and served on the Governor’s Water Council. He was honored in 1997 by the State of Nebraska with the Career Service Award for outstanding performance as the manager of the URNRD and his community service.
Ron was a civic leader in Imperial. He was a past president of the Rotary and was honored as a Rotary Paul Harris Fellow. He was Past Master of Imperial Masonic Lodge, a 32nd degree Scottish Right Mason and joined the Order of Eastern Star with his granddaughter Nikki.
He was a dedicated American Legion member and past commander and a major organizer and funder of Boys State.
He was a past president of Jaycees and was awarded outstanding Jaycee of the Year. Ron volunteered as a fireman and was Outstanding Young Fireman in 1969 and served a term as Administrative Head of the Fire Department. He served on numerous city boards and the Education Service Unit. He was also appointed Admiral of the Great Navy of the State of Nebraska by the Governor.
Other civic pursuits included being a life member and past commander of the Andrew Kinder VFW, a member of the Disabled Veterans Commander Club, a member of the Lions Club and the Izaac Walton League.
A sports enthusiast, Ron played high school football and city league baseball. He spent numerous hours coaching his children’s and grandchildren’s sports team, coaching the American Legion baseball team, organizing tournaments and umpiring.
He was a fan and dedicated follower of all Chase County Longhorn and Nebraska Cornhusker sports. He drove near and far to watch his grandchildren play sports and enthusiastically express his support.
When not serving his community, he enjoyed hunting and farming. After retirement he continued his interest in farming by raising cattle and delivering beef to his kids and grandkids. He also enjoyed raising chickens, ducks, pheasants, turkeys, geese and prairie chickens.
One of Ron’s most cherished experiences was being nominated and chosen to lay a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington Cemetery in Virginia. He felt it was a tremendous honor.
Ron was preceded in death by his mother, Irene Milner; his father, Lawrence (Pate) Milner and his brother, Charles Milner.
He is survived by his wife, Monna of Imperial; son, Jerry, and wife, Susan, of Grand Island, Neb.; daughter, Becky, and husband, Doug Carman, of Imperial; daughter, Debora and husband, Craig Heskett, of York, Neb.; and daughter, Linda and husband, Mark Graff, of McCook, Neb.; grandchildren Justin, Rhett and Molly Milner, Nikki and husband, Sean Bermingham, Chris and wife, Angie Carman, Carly Arterburn, Jayme, Jade and Jared Muehlenkamp; great grandchildren Halie Bermingham, Adaleah and Makenna Carman; brothers and sisters, Dean and Dorothy Milner of Imperial, Neb., Virginia and Carl Ridlen of Fairview, Tenn., Delmer and Wilma Milner of Champion, Neb., Leonard and Effie Milner of San Jose, Calif. and Viola and Dale Bischoff of Wauneta, Neb.
Funeral services were held Thursday, May 7, 2009, at 10:30 a.m. at the United Methodist Church in Imperial, Neb., with Pastor Kay Alnor officiating.
Pianist was Mr. Don Newman, accompanist was Mrs. Marcia Bauerle and soloist was Mrs. Susan Milner.
Casketbearers were Jade Muehlenkamp, Jared Muehlenkamp, Jayme Muehlenkamp, Justin Milner, Chris Carman, Nikki Bermingham, Carly Arterburn, Rhett Milner and Molly Milner.
Honorary casketbearers were Gene Haarberg, Byron Hust, Dick Bartels, Lowell Nesbitt, Bob Bartels, Jerry Willhoft and Don Welch.
Masonic rites were by the Purity Lodge #198 A.F.&A.M. and Eastern Star #279, Imperial.
Military rites were by VFW Andrew Kinder Post #4688, Imperial.
Outside honor guard was the Imperial Volunteer Fire Department, Imperial.
Interment was at Mount Hope Cemetery, Imperial, Neb.
Liewer Funeral Home was in charge of arrangements.