Kevin Lee Jech was kicked out August 16th, 1957, by his twin sister Kristy to join the world with their parents Keith and Lois Jech and brother Kerry.
He graduated from Wayne High School in 1975 and went on to become a Vocational Ag teacher by completing studies at Wayne State College. After a short taste of teaching, he decided teaching was not for him. Throughout his years in Wayne, he shared many memories with Al Grovas, Randy Pinkelman, as well as others. There were a multitude of adventures with them including hunting adventures, a trip to Spain, and they possibly got into a little trouble together.
In 1978 he travelled to the western part of the state with Stacy Swinney building bridges. He built more than just a few bridges with Stacy and continued to be nothing other than his usual ornery self. Through his adventures with Stacy, he sold his 1970 Pontiac Tempest to Donna Norton who little did he know would later become a part of his life. As he would say, “she stole it!”
While in the western part of the state he met Joyce Landreth, they were married in 1983, and were joined by their first son Timothy John in the fall of 1984. Kevin found his place in western Nebraska with Joyce and loved the area. During this time, he had begun working for the Hay Springs Road Department as an equipment operator. In 1987 Kevin, Joyce, and Tim were joined by Benjamin James. Not long after Ben was born there was an accident that left Kevin as a single father of two.
With his love for the area, he purchased a property which is now the Jech Ranch north of Rushville. He wanted a place to enjoy with his family and share his love for hunting and the outdoors. In 1990 he took a chance to get ahold of the little gal that “stole” his car years prior by asking Dot Norton (her mother) for her phone number. After a few mishaps and stories later, they got married in 1992. It was to their surprise that they were joined by Nathaniel Jeramiah in 1994 and in 1997 he felt a little old when Melissa Jean joined them, but he finally had his little girl Missy.
He enjoyed hunting, fishing, the outdoors, family, friends, working with kids, and being at home on the place. Through the years he did his best to be there for the kids by being at football and sporting events for Tim and Ben. Then for Nate and Missy with their adventures and multiple laughs that always kept him on his toes. Donna did her best to keep them all going and as she says she earned every one of the grey hairs from Kevin and the kids.
Kevin was the most at home on the ranch and preferred not to leave in his later years. He impacted many through the National Wild Turkey Federation, 4-H Shooting Sports, the local volunteer fire department, as a reserve deputy for the Sheridan County Sheriff’s Office, and the many other things he did. No doubt he was one of a kind with his orneriness, stubbornness, kindness, heart of gold, and he could always give a person a good laugh.
There were always good times to be had when it came to get togethers at the Jech Ranch. The annual birthday celebration that included Kevin’s and Terry Robbins’ birthday’s and later his daughter in law Sam’s was always something he looked forward to. In recent years he looked forward to visiting with friends Homer, Terry Michaelson, Tony Puchner, Stacy Swinney, and many more over morning coffee, a cold beverage, or just over the smoker cooking for a get-together. His wife, four children and spouses, seven grandchildren, family, friends, and known sidekick Breezy meant the world to him. If you didn’t see Breezy on the four-wheeler with him it usually meant she was running behind trying to catch up because she fell off and Kevin didn’t notice she had fallen off. He wasn’t always a man of many words, but he was an amazing teacher to his children and always had a story to tell. His smile, laugh, and personality were what made him the man he was.
Kevin is survived by his parents Keith and Lois; siblings: Kristy and Ron Spicer, Kerry and Jane Jech; wife Donna; mother-in-law Dorothy Norton; children Tim and Ashley Jech, Ben and Brandi Jech, Nate and Sam Jech, and Missy Jech; grandchildren Piper, Tucker, Skyler, Sawyer, Suttyn, Seeley, and Michael; dog and friend Breezy; many other family and friends that he touched in his lifetime. He will be greatly missed and always loved.
A memorial has been established for the N. W. Nebraska NWTF Chapter to promote outdoor youth and veteran activities and donations may be sent in care of Chamberlain Chapel, PO Box 970, Chadron, NE 69337.