Carmen del Llano Mattes
Born: September 4, 1938, Juiz de Fora, Brazil
Death: August 30, 2023, Omaha, NE
Carmen was born in Juiz de Fora, Brazil, on September 4, 1938, the daughter of Marcelina Weitzel and Carlos Del Lhano. From kindergarten through 12th grade, she attended Instituto Granbery, a Methodist educational center which also included a School of Law and a Theological Seminary. Her father was a History Teacher for most of his life. Carmen’s schoolmates through secondary school included the children of Polish and German refugees. She was a member of the school’s volleyball team that won the city-wide tournament in her senior year.
Upon graduation, Carmen participated in the International Christian Youth Exchange program, which sent her to Portland, Oregon. The wonderful host family for the school year provided unforgettable memories in the beautiful City of Roses, shared with three siblings, and many new friends.
After returning to Brazil, Carmen applied and was accepted into a scholarship program at Nebraska Wesleyan University in Lincoln. While at Wesleyan, she met her future husband, Warren Mattes, an English/Drama major from Scottsbluff, NE. They married in 1963. Lincoln became their home as Warren completed his graduate program at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Upon graduation at Wesleyan in Business Studies in 1964, Carmen joined the staff of the UNL Sociology Department where she especially enjoyed editorial work for the National Journal of Sociological Inquiry, as well as translating faculty research done in Brazil. After their daughter, Jennifer, was born, Carmen started graduate studies in the UNL College of Business, the first woman to do so. She earned an M.A. in Management in 1975 and was inducted into Beta Gamma Sigma, scholastic honorary. Carmen co-taught classes in Business Management at Offutt Air Force Base.
After moving to Omaha for Warren’s work, Carmen became employed at the University of Nebraska Omaha (UNO), where she worked in the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs until her retirement in 2007. For over 30 years, Carmen assisted countless students, organized meetings, banquets, and projects. She was most proud of her involvement with the Omaha Circle of Omicron Delta Kappa (ODK), the national collegiate leadership honorary, earning several certificates of appreciation. She also received awards from UNO for “meritorious service and dedication to improving the quality of the University”.
Carmen loved to travel, hike in Estes Park, CO, cook Brazilian dinners for friends, watch old classic movies, read, and spend time with friends. She will be missed by her daughter, Jennifer, and her “adopted” McNally family: Loretta, Tim, Carmen, Brendan and William. She was preceded in death by her husband, Warren; her parents; and her brother, Carlos.
Memorials in Carmen’s name may be sent to the Nebraska Wesleyan Theater Renovation Project, 5000 St. Paul Avenue, Lincoln, Nebraska, 68504 or to the UNO Global Emergency Crisis Fund in care of the NU Foundation, 2285 S. 67th St., #200, Omaha, Nebraska, 68106.
A Memorial Service will be held for Carmen on October 4, 2023, at 4:00 p.m. at Aksarben Village Senior Living Community, 1330 So. 70th St., Omaha, NE 68106.