Eldon Earl "Red" Wickham, age 82, of Arapahoe, Nebraska passed away Monday, July 20, 2009 at Phelps Memorial Hospital in Holdrege, Nebraska. He was born on July 2, 1927 south of Arapahoe, Nebraska on the family farm to Earl & Berdina (Cowles) Wickham.
He attended a country school through the 8th grade and graduated from Arapahoe High School with the Class of 1944. He worked on the family farm and for George Riepe trucking cattle and heavy equipment. In August of 1946 he was drafted in the Army. He went to Fort Logan, in Denver, Colorado and then on to Fort Bliss, Texas where he completed basic training. From there he went to William Beaumont General Hospital in El Paso, Texas where he worked in the hospital and military police. He was discharged in September of 1947. He would returned to Arapahoe, driving a truck for Paul Weverka hauling gravel. On February 16, 1968 he married Irene Ethel Sousley in Tipton, Missouri. They bought a home in Arapahoe. He went to work for Longsine Brothers hauling propane, heavy equipment, and cattle. On December 1, 1979 his wife Irene died. He and Fred Hoffman started the F-Red Truck Line hauling cattle for local cattle feeders. After the partnership was dissolved, he worked for Adams Construction moving heavy equipment. When his father became ill, he took over the farming. He and his brother Sanford worked together farming both his and their parents farms.
In the fall of 1982 he had surgery in Holdrege, Nebraska, while there he met his best friend's sister, Norma Paxton Jones. On August 24, 1983 they were married. In 1997 melanoma cancer forced him to have an extensive surgery. After selling his farm, he worked as needed for Bob Anderson.
He was preceded in death by his parents, wife Irene, brother Sanford and wife Mildred Wickham, brother-in-law Jack Kimble.
Survivors include his wife Norma Wickham of Arapahoe, Nebraska
Sister: Patsy Kimble of Westminster, Colorado
Step-daughter: DeAnn & husband Tom Nickel of Kearney, Nebraska
Step-Son: Richard & wife Lynette Verbeck of Axtell, Nebraska
Nephew: Kerry Lee & wife Lynn Kimble of Lakewood, Colorado
Condolences and personal reflections may be sent to wenburgfuneralhome.com
Viewing and visitation will be Wednesday, July 22, from 9 AM till 8 PM at Wenburg Funeral Home at Arapahoe, Nebraska and prior to the service at the church. Funeral services will be Thursday, July 23, 2009 at 10:30 AM at St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Arapahoe, Nebraska with Rev. Jami Anderson, officiating. Burial will be at the Arapahoe Cemetery in Arapahoe, Nebraska. Military service provided by American Legion Post #96 of Arapahoe, Nebraska. Wenburg Funeral Home of Arapahoe, Nebraska is in charge of the arrangements.