Gerald “Jerry” Paul Kruse

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 the family farm in Washington County with his parents, brother, David and sister, Marti. He attended Blair High School graduating in 1968. He was a gifted football player who was chosen to participate in the 1968 Shine Bowl in Lincoln, Nebraska. 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 Streets, 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 and starting 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. He 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; 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.



  • Gene Kruse Posted March 16, 2023 6:22 pm

    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

  • Robert, Julie, Allysia Loomis Posted March 16, 2023 8:32 pm

    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. 🙏

  • Margaret Ward Posted March 17, 2023 3:21 pm

    Brett, sincere sympathy on the passing of your father. Thoughts and prayers with you and all your family at this very sad time. Margaret

  • Grace Riggs Posted March 19, 2023 12:50 pm

    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

  • Rosaleen Cotter Posted March 20, 2023 7:18 am

    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

  • Sarah Deaton Posted March 20, 2023 3:15 pm

    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.
    Sarah Deaton

  • Carl Lorenzen Posted March 21, 2023 8:07 am

    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.


  • Bruce Ann Sorensen Posted March 21, 2023 11:33 am

    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 !

  • Philip Lorenzen Posted March 22, 2023 8:13 am

    Marilyn and I offer our sympathy to all of Jerry’s family members. I enjoyed many great conversations with Jerry (trying to solve the problems of the World). As I travelled to my farm site I would stop to visit with him when he was relaxing on his front porch. A very long time ago when I grew out of a need for my bicycle I gave it to Jerry. I am blessed to have many memories of three generations of the Kruse families, Phil.

  • Tim Kruse Posted March 25, 2023 10:05 am

    We are so sorry for the loss of cousin Jerry. What a character he was. I always looked forward to talking to Jerry knowing his smart comments would be coming. His presence at our family gatherings was a pure joy to behold. His sense of wit along with the straight face in delivery was so fun to watch. Nancy, Ross & Brett and your families, please know you are in our prayers and are sending a big virtual hug to you guys. We are sorry we could not make it to Jerry’s celebration of life, but please know we are thinking of you!

  • Bradley Jensen Posted March 27, 2023 8:23 pm

    So sorry to hear about Jerry’s passing Nancy… Erika and I both think about you both and miss having you as neighbors (Schoolhouse). Prayers be with you and the rest of your family during this difficult journey of life…we only wish that you are left with all of the wonderful memories of Jerry’s life and it can bring a lifetime of smiles for you

  • Jeff Kane Posted March 29, 2023 1:46 pm

    Nancy and Family, I was so saddened when I received notice of Jerry’s passing, as I had just visited with him 2 pays prior. Jerry was very generous with his time and friendship, and my Family loved using his College World Series tickets every June. Jerry attended my son’s funeral 5 months ago, and I was honored to attend his Celebration of Life last Saturday evening. I will keep your family in my prayers, rest in peace Jerry.

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