Gerald Paul Kruse
October 22, 1948 – March 13, 2023
VISITATION: Saturday, March 25th at 6pm at the West Center Chapel.
Gerald “Jerry” Paul Kruse was born October 22, 1948, in Omaha, Nebraska, to Ray and Ruberta Kruse. He lived the majority of his life on his family farm in Washington County with his parents, brother David and sister Marti. He attended Blair High School and graduated in 1968. He was a gifted football player who was chosen to participate in the 1968 Shine Bowl in Lincoln, NE. Post-high school, he attended Milford Trade school for welding. He was well known and loved in the Blair and Ft. Calhoun communities with an expansive network of friends.
He was a devoted son who farmed both Omaha and Washington County farms with his Father, Ray. At the peak of his farming career, he farmed over a thousand acres between the land in Blair and Omaha; including grounds where Mulhalls Nursery, Champions Golf Course, and the Bakers Plaza on 132nd and Maple now reside. While working with his farming, Jerry would often haul livestock to Wisconsin, and from this began his love for trucking.
In 1972, he met the love of his life Nancy Lee Hannafious and the two were married on June 30, 1973. The two lived on the family farm located on 134th and Maple, where he raised a variety of livestock, including hogs, sheep, and calves, in addition to crop farming. They were blessed with two sons, Ross (1975) and Brett (1980). In 1991, Jerry moved his family, along with his Grandfather’s house, to the farm in Washington County, where he would reside for the remainder of his life.
In 2005, Jerry retired from farming and returned to his love of trucking by buying a Peterbilt Semi to start his own independent trucking company hauling heavy agricultural equipment. He did this for five years before selling his truck after being recruited to be a Right of Way Agent for Northern Natural Gas. He loved the work and connections he made traveling across Nebraska discussing and negotiating with land owners and did this up until the collapse of ENRON. In 2017, he grew restless and again went back to trucking, buying another Peterbilt to haul a variety of materials from Metal to Grain.
Jerry is survived by his wife, Nancy; son, Ross (Heather); grandchildren, Payton and Landon; son, Brett (Bethany); sister Martha Fegter (Gerald); sister-in-law Ann Kruse; nieces: Amy (Kruse) Spawn, Kim Kruse Marker, Stephanie (Kruse) Martin; aunt, Bonnie Martin (Ted); grandnieces and nephews.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Ray and Ruberta Kruse, and brother David.
Jerry had a big and boisterous personality. He loved his family and friends. He loved his morning coffee with his coffee buddies and making the rounds about town to see and chat with friends. He loved watching and hearing about his granddaughter Payton and grandson Landon shooting trap. When not running around visiting with others, you could find him at home watching NASCAR, Football, and old Western movies. He was generous to a fault. He touched many lives and will be sorely missed.
Our sincerest condolences to your family. Cousin Jerry was by far the biggest personality, loudest laugher, gentlest of heart, giant of a relative we have. His banter and wit were a consistent source of laughter. When we were kids, we’d sit listening our dad’s & older cousins stories as they played cards. Jerry was a card that I’ll never forget… Our family was certainly blessed to have him our lives.
I’m sorry we cannot make the trip to join in his celebration of life. Much love to your family, Gene
We are saddened to hear of Jerry’s passing.. Sending love. You will be in our prayers and on our minds during this difficult time. 🙏
Brett, sincere sympathy on the passing of your father. Thoughts and prayers with you and all your family at this very sad time. Margaret
Nancy, I’m so very sorry for he loss of your husband. My condolences to you and your family.I’m praying for peace and comfort
Brett, my sincere condolences to you and your family on the loss of your Dad. My thoughts and prayers are with you at this difficult time. May he Rest in Peace. Rosaleen
Brett, my sincere condolences in the loss of your father. Praying for peace and comfort during this time of loss for you and your family.
Diane and I extend our deepest sympathy. Jerry was a good friend and his presence at the coffee table will be missed by all in many locations! We will well remember his conversations and will always cherish his friendship. May you find comfort knowing that God’s Grace is with you.
Nancy, our prayers are with you & your family. We were so shocked to hear of Jerry’s passing & remember the many laughs we have had with you both years ago. Hugs to you all !