Obituary Record

Marion L. Loftis
Died on 5/28/2008

Published in The Enterprise, May 30, 2008

MARION L. LOFTIS, 90 (picture)

Former Herman resident Marion L. Loftis, 90, died Wednesday, May 28, 2008, at the Golden Living Center in Tekamah.

Funeral services are 10 a.m. Saturday, May 31, at the Alder Grove United Methodist Church in rural Craig. Interment will be at the Tekamah Cemetery.

Visitatiion is from 1 to 8 p.m. Friday, May 30, at Pelan Funeral Home in Tekamah, with the family receiving friends from 5 to 7 p. m., and a prayer service at 7 p.m. Visitatiion will also be held at the church on Saturday, one hour prior to services.

Marion Leroy Loftis was born July 30, 1917 in the rural Herman area to Bert Nels and Effie Grace (Gilliam) Loftis.

He attended Herman School and graduated from Herman High School in 1934.

On Oct. 9, 1941, he married Gladys Christoffersen in Blair.

Mr. Loftis farmed with his father in the Alder Grove neighborhood, south of Craig. He also worked for the ASCS Office for several years throughout his life. Mr. and Mrs. Loftis retired from farming and moved to Tekamah in 1983.

He was a dedicated member of the Alder Grove United Methodist Church and mowed the church lawn for a number of years. He also helped with activities at Tekamah United Methodist Church. He was a volunteer at the Tekamah Recycling Center on Saturdays and was a board member of the Chatt Center.

He is survived by his wife, Gladys, of Tekamah; two daughters and sons-in-law, Donna and Robert Gatzemeyer of Tekamah; Linda and Wayne Nelson of Blair; five grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his sister, Mildred French; and a granddaughter, Juliann Gatzemeyer.

Memorials are suggested to the donor’s choice.

#2 Article published in the Nov. 5, 2016 World Herald by staff writer, Michael Kelley

In the European aftermath of World War II, a 21-year-old Nebraska farm boy—a future Methodist minister, was moved to write about the stunning death and destruction.

“As we passed through the streets,” he wrote, “I got my first real idea of the terrible force that a planeload of bombs must carry.”

He had arrived after America and its allies won the war. But he soon saw wrecked planes, tanks and cars as well as battle-field debris and “whole trains that had been bombed and wrecked and burned…a mass of twisted and rusted stell.”

His name was Marlon Loftis, and he grew up in the town of Herman, 35 moles north of downtown Omaha. In the post-war occupation, he served as a code-room chief and cryptographer.

After his later career as a pastor in Nebraska and Iowa towns, he died at 66 in 1991.

Recently, son Rod Loftis of Omaha for the first time came across what his dad had written as a young man.

“I was blown away,” said Rod, 65, who shared the essay with The World-Herald. “I’ve read it over and over. It sounds just like him.”

The young Marlon Loftis also wrote about agriculture in France and Germany, with vineyards on the sides of mountains, but “no corn to be seen anywhere.” Belgian horses and oxen were everywhere.

As Veterans Day approaches, we honor all who have served in the military, including those who didn’t see combat. It’s clear from the young Marlon’s writing that he honored those who went before him in arms.

“This had been war in all of its reality,” he wrote. “It seemed unbelievable that here on this field so far from home, so many of our boys had fallen, giving their all for what they believed in.”

Hitler’s claim of a super or master race was false, the future pastor observed, adding that America was strong “because we are every race on earth melted into one.”

~~~ Obituary courtesy of the Washington County Genealogical Society. Newspaper clippings on file in the Blair Public Library at Blair, Nebraska.~~~

Find A Grave Memorial# 36450792

Printed in the Washington County Enterprise on 5/30/2008