Friday, January 6, 2017

Dorchester Loses Community Stalwart Don Eret At Age 85

Longtime Dorchester citizen Don Eret was a lot of things: scholar, veteran, rocket engineer, farmer, state lawmaker, activist, community volunteer and leader.  But to most of us, he was simply known as Don -- a man who loved Dorchester.

Don passed away Wednesday at the age of 85.  His funeral will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 9, 2017, at the Dorchester United Methodist Church with Pastor Paixao Baptista officiating. Interment is in the Dorchester Cemetery with military services. Visitation will be from 1-8 p.m. on Sunday at Lauber-Moore Funeral Home, Friend. Family will greet relatives and friends from 6-8 p.m. Sunday at the funeral home and one hour prior to the service on Monday. Memorials have been established to the Dorchester Alumni Association for scholarships. 

His obituary follows.

Donald Lee Eret, was born May 31, 1931 on a farm south of Dorchester to Adolph and Emma (Nejdl) Eret, the oldest of three children and of Dorchester, passed away suddenly, on Wednesday, January 4, 2017, at the age of 85 years 7 months and 5 days. As a young boy, he attended country school south of Dorchester and graduated with the Class of 1948 from Dorchester High School. Don furthered his education at the University of Nebraska, and completed his BS Degree in Agriculture in 1953. While attending the University, he was united in marriage to Lois Naomi Arnold on December 22, 1950, at the United Methodist Church in Dorchester and to this union three children, Joyce, Lee and Larry were born. 

Don joined the US Army and during his service, he served on the staff at the Ordinance Guided Missile School in Huntsville, AL where Don and his family lived for 17 years. When Don was discharged from the service in 1956, he went to work for Brown-Teledyne Corporation as a mechanical-aerospace engineer. This position included providing engineering services to NASA on the Saturn V booster moon landing program. 

In 1970 Don and Lois returned to Nebraska and took over the family farm in 1972. Don was a long and faithful member of the United Methodist Church of Dorchester. He was also a member of the Dorchester American Legion Post, WFLA Tabor Lodge and the Farmer’s Union.

He was active in the American Agriculture movement and participated in the tractorcade to Washington in 1978 when several thousand farmers drove tractors to Washington, DC in response to the US ag policies. Don organized supporters to keep the Nebraska Testing Laboratory active, which became the official designated tractor testing station for the US.

From 1983 to 1987, Don served in the Nebraska State Legislature. He was active in the Saline County Democrats and was honored with the Nebraska Democratic Party Hall of Fame Award in 2011. 

He had kind heart and a smile for everyone he met. He was an excellent care-giver to Lois for many years. He had a special love for his grandchildren and enjoyed spending time with them and making them laugh.

He is survived by his daughter and son-in-law, Joyce and Bobby Boyd, Madison, AL, sons and daughters-in-law, Lee and Janice Eret, Lincoln, Larry and Betty Eret, Goehner, nine grandchildren and spouses, Brian and Melissa TeGantvoort, Garth TeGantvoort, Jessie and Josh Franklin, Michelle and Mitch McCarthy, Lindsey Eret and Jordan Wilmes, Kelli and Brian Kohout, Nikki Avery, Jamie and Jeff Bishop, Andrea Eret and fiancĂ© Jack Classen, 17 great-grandchildren, sisters and brother-in-law, Doris Richtarik, Wilber, Gladys and Ted Schmidt, Fremont, sister-in-law, Belva Johnson, York, numerous nieces, nephews and a host of other relatives and friends. 

Don was preceded in death by his parents, his wife, Lois in 2015, grandson, Dale Boyd, brothers-in-law, Dale Arnold, Chuck Johnson and Gene Richtarik.

Condolences to the family may be sent by clicking here.


  1. We miss Don and Louis already!

  2. One of the few Democrats I am proud to say I voted for. My condolences to his family!

  3. Don represented an era back when Democrats cared about the greater good and the common man, not the crazy fringes and extreme, leftist, social issues crowd that dominates the news media, education and entertainment pillars of America today. I fear my grandfather's democrat party is passing along with Don's generation, and that's not good for the future of our country.


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