Duane Simonsen, 91, of Pender, NE passed away peacefully on Monday, December 23, 2019 at Legacy Garden Rehabilitation and Living Center in Pender. Funeral Services will be on Monday, December 30, 2019 at 10:30 a.m. at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Pender; with Reverend Robert Schilling officiating. Visitation will be on Sunday, December 29, 2019 at Munderloh-Smith Funeral Home in Pender; from 5:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. with a Prayer Service at 7:00 p.m. Burial will be in St. John’s Lutheran Church Cemetery in Pender. Memorials are suggested to the family for future designation. Arrangements are under the direction of Munderloh-Smith Funeral Home in Pender.
Duane was born on September 17, 1928 in Pender, NE, the son of Paul and Elsie (Paulsen) Simonsen. He was baptized on October 14, 1928, and later confirmed on June 21, 1942 at St. John’s Lutheran Church. After graduating from Pender High School in 1945, Duane was united in marriage to Lois Renander in Hiawatha, KS on January 6, 1947. The couple lived in Portland, Oregon for almost two years, where Duane worked in construction on a shipyard, before returning to a farm south of Pender. Eventually he was able to purchase the farm where he was born, which his grandfather homesteaded in 1884. He took great pride in his heritage and ability to continue farming well into his 80’s. He always enjoyed his wife’s home cooking and acquired quite a sweet tooth in the process.
In addition to farming, he was an active life-long member at St John’s Lutheran Church and served as an elder for many years. He worked on the school board of District 62, served on the Cleveland Township and numerous other committees. He and Lois were members of the Jolly Farmer Card Club. He loved music and it was a treat to hear him yodel. He really enjoyed sports especially baseball, football and boxing. His favorite teams were Green Bay Packers, Nebraska Cornhuskers and NY Yankees. He was always ready to play catch with his boys, even if he had been in the field all day. His hobbies included fishing for Walleye, camping, golfing and puzzles.
He is preceded in death by his parents; wife, Lois; sister, Elaine Kai; brother, Kenneth; son-in-law, Denny Watterson; grandsons, Erik and Joel Conrad.
He is survived by his four children, Danny (Janelle) Simonsen of Pender, Randy (Claudia) Simonsen of Pender, Cheryl Watterson (fiance, Tom Surman) of Sergeant Bluffs, IA, Kathy Conrad of Omaha; 16 grandchildren and 32 great grandchildren.