Merna Lee Ganshert of Gordon, NE was born August 15, 1948 in Gordon Hospital. She started life in a converted garage south of Rushville, NE and then moved to Batesland, SD where she attended school through the eighth grade.
While in Batesland, the family attended the Lutheran church where she was baptized at nine years old. She took catechism and joined the church at the age of 13 (eighth grade). After moving to Gordon, she attended the Methodist church where she is a member.
Merna attended Gordon High School where she took college prep courses and worked as a Nurse’s Aide at Gordon Memorial Hospital. She graduated Gordon High School in 1966. In 1967, she graduated from the Institute for Medical Technique in Minneapolis, MN as a dental assistant. She went to work for the Ray Dental Group in Rapid City, SD.
Merna then met Bernie when coworkers set them up by asking them to babysit on the same night. They were married in Gordon on July 15, 1967. For the next 16 years, Merna was an Air Force wife and mother. She was able to see a lot of the world including Biloxi, MS, Tampa, FL, Burkburnett and Wichita Falls, TX. By this time Merna had 3 sons, and the family then moved to Germany, where Merna visited many countries throughout Europe. While in Germany, she also worked with ceramics and decorated cakes for all occasions. In 1982, they returned to the states and lived in Shawnee, OK for a year where she completed a secretarial course at Gordon Cooper Vo-Tech. When Bernie retired from the Air Force in 1983, the family then moved to Gordon, NE.
Merna sewed and hand-crafted her kids’ costumes every year, crocheted blankets, and painted on canvas. She first enjoyed crafts as a child with her grandmother, Ehrma Reeves, who taught her to embroider and paint fabrics.
While in Gordon, NE, Merna worked as a Teacher’s Aide for Gordon Public Schools, a Teller/Bookkeeper for Abbott Bank, a switchboard operator and biller at Gordon Memorial Hospital, and a Secretary for Gordon Elementary. In 2000, she continued her education at Northwest Nebraska Community College for a certificate in medical transcription. For the next 6 years, she worked as a Medical Transcriptionist in Gordon Memorial Hospital.
In 2006, Merna joined Bernie in retirement and enjoyed traveling and camping, visiting with family and friends across the country, and seeing sites – from Alaska to Florida to California and everywhere in between, and particularly to Arizona where they spent many winter months with their son Eric and his family. She also loved returning home to Gordon to spend time with family and friends in her home, filling it with laughter and love. She will be remembered for her love and dedication to her husband, children, family, and friends, and for her faith in God.
Merna Lee Ganshert passed away on December 8, 2021, at Regional West Medical Center in Scottsbluff, NE, with her beloved husband Bernie and sister Glenda by her side. She was preceded in death by her father, Norman L. Davis, mother Norma L. Reeves Davis Child, mother and father-in-law Lawrence and Anna Ganshert, brother Gary M. Davis, brothers-in-law Joseph and Alan Ganshert, Uncle Kenny Allison, Uncle Melvin Davis, Aunt Lavonne “Dee Dee” Burrows, and Aunt Lois Sine. She is survived by her husband, Bernard L. Ganshert, children Christopher and wife Dixie Ganshert of Lincoln, NE, Scot Ganshert of Colorado Springs, CO, and Eric and wife Brenda Ganshert of Tucson, AZ, grandchildren Christopher and wife Amanda Ganshert, Jacob Ganshert, and Alexander Ganshert all of Lincoln, NE, Rose Ganshert of Colorado Springs, CO, and Eriq and wife Rachel Ganshert of Tucson, AZ, great-grand child Lucas Ganshert of Tucson, AZ, brother Owen and wife Marlene Davis of Rushville, NE, sister Glenda Davis Capler of Gordon, NE, Uncle Eldred and Aunt Jean Reeves of Gordon, NE, and Aunt Anna Allison of Rushville, NE, and numerous nieces, nephews, and all of her Ganshert family from Wisconsin.