Saturday, May 22, 2021

Obituary: Joseph A. Harre

 Joseph Aloysious Harre was born in Friend, Nebraska to Peter Jerome & Henrietta (Roeser) Harre on April 23, 1948. He passed away on Monday, May 17, 2021 at Bryan East Hospital in Lincoln, Nebraska at the age of 73 years and 24 days. He was the fifth of seven children and grew up loving his siblings.

Joseph attended St. Stephen Elementary School and graduated from Exeter High School in 1966. During his high school years, he was active in Future Farmers of America and graduated with honors.

Joseph was married to Diane Elizabeth Gross on October 17, 1980 at St. Adalbert Catholic Church in Omaha, Nebraska. He was a devoted and loving husband and married for nearly forty years. To this union was born Elizabeth Ann, his beloved daughter. She was his pride and joy. His life centered around her, son-in-law Christopher, and grandchildren Kaitlyn & Gavin Martin. He treasured the years with his daughter and her family and was always involved with school events with Kaitlyn and Gavin, encouraging them to get an education.

Joe was a dispatcher and driver in the trucking industry and was also a cattle feeder all his life. He was always interested in world events and politics. He was an avid reader and conversationalist. He was a lifelong animal lover and enjoyed the company of the three family dogs. He was always interested and concerned about his family, nieces, and nephews and their families.

Joe was preceded in death by his wife, Diane Elizabeth Harre; his parents, Peter Jerome and Henrietta (Roeser) Harre; brother, Robert Jerome Harre; his father-in-law and mother-in-law Ralph & Darlene Gross; and brothers-in-law Merrill Williamsen and Walter Senter.

He is survived by his daughter, Elizabeth Ann Martin and husband Christopher Lee Martin of York, Nebraska; grandchildren Kaitlyn Marie Martin & Gavin Joseph Martin of York, Nebraska; sisters, Anna Maire Williamsen of Rohnert Park, California, Josephine Joan Senter of Gold Canyon, Arizona, Mary Monica Bristol and husband Norman of Exeter, Nebraska; sister-in-law Kathleen Harre of Exeter, Nebraska; brothers, John Henri Harre and wife Ruth of Omaha, Nebraska and Noel Edward Harre and wife Cindy of Plattsmouth, Nebraska; and a host of nieces, nephews, great nieces & nephews and many cousins.

Joseph was loved, admired and respected by many whose lives he touched over the years.

Exeter-Milligan School Board Discusses Meeting with FC Board


Exeter-Milligan school board met on Tuesday, May 11 for their regularly scheduled meeting in Exeter with over twenty guests present.

The board approved the consensus agenda before opening the floor for public comment.

First to the microphone was Kenny Soukup.  He opened noting “seems like we are moving kind of fast for consolidation. Why?”

Exeter-Milligan school board president Adam Erdkamp responded, “We are trying to talk about what we need to do.  I think we are running out of kids and I don’t think it’s getting any better.”

Board member Eric Milton added, “We’ve had two studies the shows with our kid count where we are at.  If you put something together we are still going to be two years away from putting an agreement together.  How much leverage are we going to have if we wait and have 25 less kids?”

Soukup responded asking, “Don’t we have some kind of leverage because I’ve always heard we are land rich?”

“I think you have certain things that would be advantage for some districts. Our valuation would be an advantage to any consolidation because it’s going to be able to disperse costs associated with educating the kids,” replied Erdkamp.

Soukup also asked about how the levy would change with either Friend or Fillmore Central.  Milton explained how efficiencies (primarily through teacher retirement) would help reduce the levy. 

After asking a few more questions about tax levies and the debt in Friend which Erdkamp assured him that would stay with the original Friend district, Soukup asked if consolidation would go to a public vote.

Erdkamp responded that he assumed it would be done as it was when Exeter and Milligan combined.

Soukup ended his time at the microphone sharing his opinion that he would like to see the district “stay how we are.”

Board member Kendra Jansky responded, “I think it’s a really exciting opportunity for our kids.  I was a little disappointed that my youngest will be a senior next year and will not be able to reap the benefits on this.  It means more kids learning from each other in the classroom. . . Socially, educationally it goes beyond low numbers. The opportunity that is sitting there for them is tremendous.”

Exeter-Milligan fourth grade teacher Shelli Mueller shared her concerns about the discussion with Fillmore Central.  She mentioned that with Friend there was a guarantee to have students in a building in Exeter for 15 years but no guarantees at all with Fillmore Central.

She was also apprehensive about the possibility of Exeter-Milligan teachers losing their job and especially how that decision would be made. “They couldn’t answer questions.  As a patron that worries me. . . I don’t think Fillmore Central is probably the one and I don’t think it’s the one for me as a teacher for sure as I have no guarantees.”

Rachel Johnson, a parent from Milligan, reviewed the differences between the rescinded offer from Friend and the Fillmore Central study.  She asked the board to confirm the differences.

She had serious concerns about the financial impact on both Exeter and Milligan if the district were to consolidate to Fillmore Central.

The audience had access to the list of questions the EM board presented the FC board and also a summary of the answers.

After Erdkamp read aloud the questions and answers the board members each responded with their thoughts about the answers.

They each expressed some serious concerns about the responses that Fillmore Central gave at the meeting, especially with the uncertainty of keeping the Exeter site open. Erdkamp summed up the board’s sentiments. “If we can’t get a commitment to keep the Exeter site then they aren’t going to have it going down the road.”

Erdkamp shared that Sheffield had received an email from Fillmore Central Superintendent Josh Cumpston who wanted to encourage the process to go forward by looking at more specifics even to include cooping some sports and activities.

Erdkamp was uncomfortable with the email, “I think that it was meant in a good way and I think it undermines the process.  If we are going to talk about this I think we need to talk about it in the open.”

Sheffield read the letter aloud at the meeting.

The board planned to revisit the discussion at the next meeting.

Board moved on to approve the non-certified contracts and a local substitute, Liz Kallhoff, and Sheffield informed the board that in the legislature, “everything dealing with schools seems to be getting shot down.”

The next meeting was set for June 9 at 8 p.m. in Milligan.


The EM board gave the FC board a list of questions that wanted answers for.  They presented it to the FC board a week before the meeting. At the school board meeting they had copies of the questions and a summary of the answers available for patrons. This is a summary of the answers.

No guarantee to keep Exeter site open.

Agree to have a site in Exeter as long as it is “viable.”

No funds to upkeep building in Milligan.

No funds to upkeep building in Exeter if there are no students present.

Avoid using Reduction In Force (RIF)process if possible.

A nine member board to begin with no answer on how it would look in the future and no guarantees of representation in the E-M district.

No new construction or remodeling in the plans as of right now.

No plans to use the Milligan field for football due to locker rooms.

Possibility of playing volleyball at Exeter, but not basketball.  Might possibly play junior varsity or junior high basketball.

Students would be transported after extracurriculuar activities.

Consolidated school would be Class C-1 and would be most likely part of the Southern Nebraska Conference.




Friday, May 21, 2021

Exeter-Milligan Friend FFA Holds Banquet


The Exeter-Milligan Friend FFA seniors hung up their jackets one more time.  From the left:  EMF FFA advisor Amy Kohtz, Abigail Eberspacher, Jackson Beethe, Clint Oldehoeft and Jaiden Papik.


Jerry Boeck (left) and Erika Arp (right) were presented with honorary chapter degrees from the Exeter-Milligan Friend FFA.


The Exeter-Milligan Friend FFA held their annual banquet on  Thursday, April 29th at the Exeter gym.


The evening was hosted by the outgoing officers.  After an invocation the members and their families enjoyed a brisket meal.


Many of the members were honored during the evening.  Greenhand degrees and chapter degrees were presented as well as all of the awards the members had earned at district and state events.


One of the highlights of the evening was the presentation of a State FFA degrees to Jaiden Papik.


The chapter also recognized the significant contributions to the ag community made by Jerry Boeck and Erika Arp and presented them with honorary chapter degrees.


The evening ended with two significant events, the hanging of the jackets by the senior and the announcing of the 2021-2022 officer team.


Abigail Eberspacher, Papik, Jackson Beethe and Clint Oldehoeft hung up their jackets one last time as their FFA high school careers ended.


The current officer team opened the envelopes to announce the new members in their current position.  For the 2021-2022 school year Chase Svehla will serve as Historian, Kiarra Fennell will be Parlimentarian, the Sentinel will be Ben Bartu, Shelby Lawver will be Reporter and Christian Weber will again serve as Treasurer.  Cameryn Brandt will be Secretary, with Kiah Songster as Vice President and Vivian Weber as President.


Below – The 2021-2022 EMF leadership team include back row from the left: Ben Bartu, Shelby Lawver, Cameryn Brandt, Kiarra Fennell, Chase Svehla and Christian Weber.  Front row: Kiah Songster (left) and Vivian Weber (right).



Thursday, May 20, 2021

Throwback Thursday: May 15, 2011


Exeter-Milligan fourth graders recently participated in the 4-H School Enrichment Geocaching activity. 14 students in Susan Wait’s fourth grade class used global satellite technology to search for hidden caches on and around the school grounds in Milligan. Lyndsey Pohlmeier, Extension Assistant taught students about longitude and latitude, the uses of GPS, and geocaching as a hobbie. Fourth graders learned to mark and find waypoints using hand-held Global Positioning System (GPS) units provided by the Fillmore County Extension Office.


Recently, two 4-H community service projects were completed in Fillmore County.

As part of the Barn Quilts of Fillmore County project, 4-H’ers selected, painted and constructed an 8’x8’ quilt block. The quilt block, an adaptation of a clover quilt block, was recently hung on the grandstand at the Fillmore County Fairgrounds. Over the past year, 14 volunteers put in over 35 hours prepping and hanging the quilt block. Fillmore Central FFA members provided the strength to hang the 125 pound quilt block. The quilt block can be seen from K street and will remain on display for years to come. The 4-H quilt block is sponsored by the Fillmore County Agricultural Society and the Fillmore County 4-H Council.

Fillmore County Farm Service Agency and Fillmore County 4-H have teamed up to plant a community garden. Local FFA Chapters and other organizations interested in participating are welcome. A small crop of popular vegetables was planted by 4-H’ers on May 9, west of the FSA office. Produce will be donated to those in need and the Meals on Wheels program. FSA and 4-H will be caring for the garden throughout the summer.


Exeter Care Center hosted an afternoon tea for all who volunteered at their facility in this last year.  Members of many of the local woman's groups were present to be thanked and enjoyed a gift of flower seeds as well as a beautiful tea.

The group was enteretained by the Exeter-Milligan kindergarten, first and second graders who presented their music program from their spring concert and then sang several numbers that were very familiar to the crowd including "Apples and Bananas" and "Down by the Bay."


Jerry Boeck, a sales agent with Pioneer Hi-Bred, has donated $400 to the Exeter-Milligan FFA program.  Boeck was awarded this scholarship money by Pioneer for his dedication to customer-focused activities throughout the year.

Exeter-Milligan Superintendent Paul Sheffield was recently recognized at the 83rd Nebraska State FFA Convention with a Honorary State Degree.  Sheffield was honored as an individual who has rendered outstanding service to the agricultural education-FFA program

Congratulations to the Exeter-Milligan State Track Meet Qualifiers.  They are:Heather Pribyl -1600 Meter Run & 800 Meter Run, Jennifer Pribyl -800 Meter Run, Austin Stride -100, 200 and 400 Meter Dash, Nolan White – Discus, Relay 4 x 800 and 4 x 400: Heather Pribyl, Taylor Erdkamp, Alicia Bigelow and Jennifer Pribyl

Exeter American Legion Auxiliary Unit 218 will be represented at the 2011 Cornhusker Girls State by Claire White.