Services will be Friday, March 8, 2013; 10:30 A.M. at First United Methodist Church, Hastings, Nebraska with Pastor Tony Dawson officiating. Burial with military rites will be Friday, March 8, 2013; 3:00 P.M. in Hillside Cemetery, North Loup, Nebraska. Following the burial there will be a fellowship at First United Methodist Church in North Loup, Nebraska. Visitation will be Thursday, March 7, 2013; 1:00 P.M. – 9:00 P.M. at the funeral home and one hour prior to service at the church. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be given to Alzheimer’s Association or North Loup Popcorn Days Committee. Private condolences may be sent to the family at www.lbvfh.com. Livingston-Butler-Volland Funeral Home & Cremation Center is serving the family.
John W. Hamer was born August 8, 1922 in North Loup, Nebraska to Thomas & Ethel (Clement) Hamer. He attended North Loup Schools and graduated with the class of 1940. At an early age John began working with his father, who was employed by Traveler’s Insurance, repairing buildings in the area. They spent some time in Colorado Springs working for the government building barracks. This gave John the opportunity to learn the carpenter trade, which he did for most of his life. On October 15, 1942 John enlisted in the Army Air Corps. He spent almost three years in England on a B-17 bomber base, where he worked in the Group Operations Department. He was discharged from the service on September 9, 1945. He returned to North Loup and began working for his father again. He later started his own construction company. He built, remodeled or repaired many homes in the area. On June 2, 1947, John was united in marriage to Berdena Otto. Five children were born to this union, Gregory, Gary, Lana, Russell and Jill. John was very active in the North Loup community. He served on the Popcorn Days committee and in 1985 was given the First Kernel award for his dedication. He also served on the Housing Development Board and was instrumental in bringing affordable housing for senior citizens to North Loup. In 1978, he received the Knights of Aksarben Good Neighbor Award. On November 5, 1966 he was appointed Postmaster at the North Loup post office. He later became one of the rural mail carriers. He retired from the postal service in 1984. In 1988, he moved to St. Paul. On June 15, 1991 John married Opal Zabloudil. They made their home in Hastings, Nebraska. They spent many winters in Mesa, Arizona where they made many wonderful friends. John loved tending to his orange and grapefruit trees. In July 2011, John became a resident of Edgewood Vista Hastings. John was a member of the American Legion, Lions Club and the Rural Carriers Association. He was a coin and stamp collector and he loved his St. Louis Cardinals and was able to see them play several times. He never lost interest in carpentry and was happiest with a hammer and saw in his hands.
John was preceded in death by his parents; one son, Gregory; one brother, Lewis; and sisters, Winnie, Florence, Evelyn, Muriel, Louise, Marjorie and Carolyn.
Wife: Opal Hamer – Hastings, NE
Sons & Spouses: Gary & Gaylene Hamer – Lincoln, NERussell & Sharyl Hamer – Gering, NE
Daughters & Spouses: Lana & Allan Hollertz – Holdrege, NE
Jill & Russ Barnes – Ord, NE
Step-Children & Spouses: Larry & Laura Zabloudil – Hastings, NE
Dan & Vera Zabloudil – Hastings, NE
Jane & Ben Bozek – Lincoln, NE
Sharell & Mike Kurcz – Glenwood, IA
Brother-in-law & Spouse: Mike & Erma Axthelm
Sister-in-law: Betty Jo Axthelm
Special friends: Bob & Wilma John