Wilma Wallin Sagers
November 26, 1925 – March 20, 2023
Wilma (Kruse) Wallin Sagers, 97, passed away on March 20 in Omaha. She was born on Thanksgiving Day, November 26, 1925, to William and Anna Sohl Kruse on family land north of 132nd and Dodge.
She attended District 25 country elementary school, Underwood High School, and UNO where she earned Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees.
Wilma married John Robert Wallin (Bob) in 1947. Bob joined General Electric’s Engineering Program, which took them to Fort Wayne, Indiana; Schenectady, New York; and Philadelphia. Wilma was a newspaper reporter in all three communities. They returned to Omaha in 1949 to lead the Wallin Electric Company. Bob died in 1976.
Wilma had an adventurous, energetic, and artistic spirit, and loved nature. She rafted in the Grand Canyon, skied, planned family trips to nearly all fifty states, enjoyed travels to Europe, India, and China, and never stopped painting and writing. In later years, she painted many oils and watercolors for her children, grandchildren, and step-grandchildren, mostly featuring the wonders of nature. Ever curious, Wilma was active in various study groups all her life, including a writing group in which she wrote memoirs of a rural Nebraska childhood and other adventures. She was passionate about words and a talented speller all her life, winning all the spelling contests at Heritage at Sterling Ridge, where she lived most recently before Josie Harper Hospice House.
Wilma was an active volunteer for many years at the Omaha Symphony, Fontenelle Forest, the Visiting Nurse Association, Joslyn Museum, Morning Star Lutheran Church, Kountze Memorial Lutheran’s De Freese Manor board, and her daughters’ schools. She was Director of Volunteers at Methodist hospital for nine years until 1986.
She is survived by three daughters: Ann Harrington (Stephen), Duluth, Minnesota; Lyn Ziegenbein, Omaha; and Julie Kaewert (William), Longmont, Colorado. Wilma also leaves five grandchildren: Annalisa Peterson, Elizabeth Harrington, Sarah Kaewert, Alexandra Kaewert, Charles Ziegenbein, and four great-grandchildren.
Wilma married John Sagers, president of Wells Fargo Bank in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, in January 1986. They lived in Cedar Rapids; Naples, Florida; and Highlands Ranch, Colorado, until John died in 2022. She is also survived by two step-daughters, five step-grandchildren, and eleven step-great-grandchildren.
Family services will be held at Kountze Memorial Lutheran Church at a later date. Burial will be at Hillcrest Cemetery.
Memorials will be appreciated at Kountze Memorial Lutheran Church, Completely Kids, the Omaha Symphony, and the Willa Cather Foundation.