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.