Dolores A. Carstens
Sep 4, 1928 – Nov 25, 2017
Preceded in death by grandson, Brett; parents, Camilia and Samuel Andersen; sister, Joan Carstens. Survived by husband of 70 years and childhood sweetheart, Gilbert G. Carstens; son, Gregg Carstens (Julie); grandchildren: Grant, Alec (fiancée, Amanda Zamora), Alyssa, and Brooke; brother-in-law, Robert Carstens; sisters-in-law, Evelyn Henderson and Merna Clayton; nieces and nephews; other relatives and friends.
The family will receive friends on Thursday, Nov. 30th from 5pm to 7pm at the West Center Chapel, followed by VIGIL SERVICE at 7pm. MASS OF CHRISTIAN BURIAL on Friday, Dec. 1st at 10:30am at St. Margaret Mary Catholic Church, 6116 Dodge St. Entombment, Resurrection Mausoleum. Memorials are suggested to American Cancer Society, St. Margaret Mary Catholic Church, or Creighton Prep.
Dolores A. Carstens was born on September 4, 1928 in Rockville, Nebraska, a tiny village of fewer than 250 people. She grew up during the Depression, living on a small farm with no running water or electricity. She and her little sister, Joan, walked three miles to school. Gilbert Carstens also went to the same small school. Little did they know that they would end up falling in love and spending the rest of their lives together, 70 years as man and wife.
After graduating from high school, Gilbert entered the Army in July of 1944. In the spring of 1945, he joined units fighting in Belgium and Germany through the waning months of WWII. Dolores would send him letters every day and according to Gil, the other servicemen would comment on how lucky he was to have “such a great gal” and begged him to read them aloud to hear news from back home.
Prior to entering her senior year of high school, Dolores and her family moved to Omaha, where she graduated from South High. Dolores and Gil married in the fall of 1947 after both found jobs in Omaha. In 1950, theirs was the first home built in a new neighborhood on the western outskirts of Omaha (76th St.). That same year, Dolores’ sister, Joan, married Gil’s brother, Bob, and six years later they built their home right next door to Dolores and Gil. They raised their children together, shared a cabin on Sherman Reservoir, and later enjoyed RV traveling together. When cancer took her sister some 16 years ago, Dolores was devastated by the loss of her best friend.
Dolores and Gil loved to dance to polkas and country music. They enjoyed attending home and away Husker football games and “gambling” at the casino (Dolores could play nickel slots for hours). She loved her grandkids, nephews, and nieces, making each one feel that they were the most important person in her life.
Dolores loved to meet new people and was genuinely interested in listening to the stories of their lives, evoking fondness and love from all who knew her. Life was good up until the last couple of rough years. She made remarkable recoveries following major brain trauma from a car accident, two hip replacement surgeries, and skilled nursing rehab stays following each. But a major heart attack in the fall and a second on November 19th proved to be too much even for her to overcome. Dolores passed away peacefully on Saturday, November 25, 2017 at the age of 89.