Elizabeth (Betty) JoAnn Nyquist, 91, of Grand Island passed away on November 7th, 2019 at Riverside Lodge. Funeral services were held on Monday, November 11th at Trinity Lutheran Church in Axtell with the Rev. Gale Dorn officiating. A luncheon will be served prior to services at 11:30 a.m. at the church. Interment will be held at the Bethany Lutheran Church cemetery. Visitation will be from 3:00 to 5:00pm on Sunday, November 10th at the Craig Funeral Home in Minden. Craig Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.
Betty was born January 7, 1928 to Arthur and Ida (Stolte) Boeker at their home in Edwardsville, Illinois. She attended Lutheran grade school and graduated from Edwardsville High School in 1946. Betty earned a diploma from the St Louis Business College and initiated her professional career at nearby Shell Oil Petroleum Refinery in Wood River, Illinois where she met a navy veteran and engineer, Roland Nyquist. They were married August 28, 1948 and eventually settled on the family farm in Axtell, Nebraska where they raised their four children.
Betty was a devoted wife and loving mother and was active in their children’s many school activities. She was involved in numerous community organizations, taught Sunday school, sang in the church choir and was a member of the Trinity Lutheran church women’s organization in Axtell. Eventually Betty and Roland moved to Phillipsburg Kansas in 1972 where they resided for 13 years. There they joined a small community group to sponsor and provide housing for a Vietnamese family who had escaped communism in North Vietnam.
Upon their return to Nebraska, Betty was active in community affairs where she and Roland helped to start a Habitat for Humanity in Kearney. In addition, Betty served on local Community Concert boards, volunteered at the Kearney Police Department and Good Samaritan Hospital and served for many years on the Axtell Oratorio Society board. She continued her love of singing in the church choir at Trinity Lutheran Church and was one of the longest time members of the Axtell Master Singers community choir that has presented Handel’s Messiah in the Axtell area since 1958.
Betty and Roland were happily married for over 71 years and truly enjoyed life together. They shared a love for music, enjoyed traveling together, were active members in the “Golden K” Kiwanis, were avid supporters of UNK athletics, and continued their active involvement in their church. Betty was happiest when she was surrounded by her family. She enjoyed sewing and was involved in various projects including sewing clothes and costumes, baby quilts, and doll clothes for grandchildren and charities. Her grandchildren will always remember sewing and baking cookies with Grandma, her cheese soup and holidays at Grandma’s house.
Those left to cherish her memory include, husband Roland of Grand Island; daughters Jane and husband Dennis Fisher of Greeley, Colorado and Cindy and husband Darwin Hahn of Grand Island; sons Jim and friend Katherine of Austin, Texas and Mark and wife Jody of Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas; brother Justin Boeker of Toledo, Ohio; sister in law Doris (Nyquist) Warden of Woodland, California; 14 grandchildren; 19 great grandchildren; and many relatives and friends. Betty was preceded in death by her parents.
Memorials may be designated to local charities, Hospice and Alzheimer’s research.
Tributes of memory can be shared with the family at www.craigfunerals.com.