July 28, 1952 – April 27, 2023
On April 27, 2023 Barry W. Blue of Omaha, NE, beloved son, husband, father and friend, passed away at the age of 70. Barry was born in Valdosta, GA to parents Wayne and Janet Blue. He grew up in Lincoln, NE and graduated from Lincoln East High School as a three-sport letterman. Barry was awarded the “Blue” Howell Memorial trophy for the Outstanding Offensive Player as quarterback of the 1970 Shrine Bowl. He attended the University of South Dakota (USD) where he played football and baseball and was well known for his “fashion forward” wardrobe choices. He exceled as a place kicker for the Coyotes, and was a member of back-to-back-to-back conference championship football teams from 1972 to 1974. In 2008, Blue was inducted into the USD Football Hall of Fame, where he continues to hold the record for most extra points made in a game.
Barry received his Bachelor of Science degree in Education from USD in 1974, and went on to receive a Masters Degree in Education, Recreation, and Physical Development from the University of Nebraska in 1977. The leadership skills Barry learned as an athlete on the field translated into a successful career in sales. Barry dedicated nearly 44 years of his life to the home improvement industry; transitioning from a sales representative to General Manager, and later a Vice President of the Pacesetter Corporation. The past ten years were spent with the Pella Corporation, where he was among the top producers and won multiple President’s Awards.
Barry met his wife Rhonda on the dance floor in Lincoln, NE and never looked back. The two were married in 1977 and raised three children together, spanning across three different states. He enjoyed coaching his children’s athletic teams, attending all different types of sporting events, and listening to live music. Barry was fun-loving, strong-willed, and had a remarkable ability to connect with people. He was most often described as “one of a kind”.
Barry was preceded in death by his father, Lt. Colonel Wayne Blue; brothers-in-law: Les Milliken, Robert Polzkill, and Curtis Willford; and beloved family pets: Reggie and Laila.
He is survived by his wife, Rhonda Blue; children: Erin McLaughlin (Chadd), Anthony Blue (Valerie), and Ashley Blue; mother, Janet Blue; sisters: Connie Milliken and Peggy Chesen (Eli); sisters-in-law: Jean Polzkill, Karan Dunn (Dennis), and Diana Williford; brother-in-law, Ben Polzkill (Cherry); grandchildren: Taylor Hansen (Justin), Alexa and Michael Blue; great grandchild, Ridge Hansen; adored dog Beau; along with many cherished nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.
Please join us for funeral services on Friday, May 12th at 11am with a Celebration of Life to follow at Heafey-Hoffman-Dworak-Cutler West Center Chapel, located at 7805 W. Center Road, Omaha, NE 68124. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to Hearts United for Animals (hua.org/donate or PO Box 286, Auburn, NE 68305), or the University of South Dakota Athletics (uniteforusd.org or 1110 N Dakota St, Vermillion, SD 57069) in memory of Barry Blue.