Ainsworth Star Journal

Ronald Ray Hughes, Sr., 66 years, of North Platte, NE, passed away with his family by his side at Great Plains Health in North Platte on Monday, February 16, 2015. Ron was born May 3, 1948, the thirteen child of Charles Francis and Maple Ellen (Rhoades) Hughes at Valentine, NE. The family came from White River, SD and Ron was their only child born in a hospital. He grew up and attended school in Valentine. In 1966 Ron traveled to Wyoming to work in the oil fields then returned to Valentine in 1970. He married Linda Murray in 1975 and they had three children, Ronnie, Lena and Ryan. They later divorced. Ron worked on ranches and was a skilled mason and cement worker  for many years. He built many pieces of art in the Valentine area including the brick fence aroundCedar Canyon and the sitting area at First National Bank. His art was a talent. He is survived by his children,  Ronnie Hughes, Jr. (Kristi Becker),of Sioux Falls, SD; and Lena (Joe) Askvig and Ryan (Jasi) Quick, of North Platte; two sisters, Dorothy Elasser, of Hot Springs, SD, and Pat Childress, of Lawrence, KS; his grandchildren, Serena Rose Marie, Victoria Elizabeth Ann, Rylynn Daniyelle Mae, Jaxon Patrick, Zaedyn James Ray and Kynzleigh JoEllen; and many nieces, nephews and other family. Ron was preceded in death by his parents, Charles and Maple; and siblings, Calvin, Delano, David, Donald, Curt, Edward, Laura Mooney, Viola Brau, Luella Hughes and an infant. Cremation was chosen. A Memorial Service was at 2:00 p.m. Friday, February 20, 2015, at Odean Colonial Chapel at C & Sycamore in North Platte. Ron will be laid to rest in the Valentine Cemetery at a later date. Condolences may be shared at The family has established a memorial. Odean Colonial Chapel at C & Sycamore is in charge of arrangements. 

Shawn Wayne Elliott was born on August 18, 1971 to Ron and Virginia Belville Elliott in Valentine, NE. He passed away on February 9, 2015 at the family ranch south of Valentine. Shawn attended Goose Creek School south of Valentine and later attended and graduated from Valentine Rural High School with the class of 1990. After graduation, Shawn worked for Rocking Arrow Ranch until 1993 when he went back to the family home ranch. Haying at the young age of nine,  Shawn began fulfilling his lifelong passion of ranching. Shawn married Patty Jacque on June 17, 2006 in Valentine. They made their home on the family ranch south of Valentine. Shawn had several passions in his life including hunting, fishing, camping, and spending time with family. He enjoyed helping his nephew Joe with tractor pulling. Part of his job duty, or so he thought, included helping cook for the whole crew. This was typical of the family man that Shawn was.  Shawn had a great love for his childrenand grandchildren. He was active in his children’s lives, always willing to make a heart filled effort to any school or community need.  Shawn was not a big camper until he married Patty; then it becamea true passion for him. He enjoyed helping at Big Alkali Fish Camp, at brandings, cooking, and farriering.  Shawn was always there to help others with a big smile on his face, and had the patience of the saint. He enjoyed attending the Denver stock shows as well as any other stock show he could attend. One of his recent highlights was going to the NFR in Las Vegas, with Patty and family for the first time. Shawn is going to be greatly missed by all. We’re going to miss all the “love you’s”, phone calls, rides, spring calving and the hugs. The ranch will not be the same, but it is a better place because of him! Shawn was preceded in death by his brother, Michal Scott Elliott; grandfather, Lowell Belville; grandparents, Tracy and Harry Elliott; brother-in-law, Zane Long; aunt, Delores Barnes; mother-inlaw, Anita (Bonnie) Bulin; fatherin- law, Frank Bulin; sister-in-law, Sandy Bulin and brother-in-law, Roy Beckman. He is survived by his wife, Patty; children, Makenzie, Shaylee, Laramie, Jessie, Brandan, Amber, TY; parents, Ron and Virginia; sister, Deb Long her children Garrett and Sheyanne; grandmother, Georgia Belville; uncle and aunts, Wayne and wife Cathie Belville, Cindy and Elliott Yenglin, Bill and Connie Elliott, Loren Elliott, Wayne and Merri Ann, Myron Barnes; step brother, Billy and wife Beth Verbeek, grandchildren, Summer and Damian. 

Funeral services for Lenora Cook were held on Saturday, February 21, 2015 at 10:30 a.m. at Mills Community Church in Mills, NE with Pastor Kenley Udd officiating. Music was provided by Kenley Udd, Steve Swanson and Geoff Smith, soloists, accompanied by Steve Swanson, pianist. Becky Zimmerman was in charge of registration and the family was flower attendants. Eulogy was given by Tamara Sue Cook. Casket bearers were grandsons and greatgrandsons: Eric Ferguson, Jefferey Cook, Keaton Martinez, Ryan Boese, Travis Cook and Jim Klemt. Interment was in the Olive Branch Cemetery in Mills, NE. Kotrba- Smith Funeral Home was in charge of arrangements. Lenora Caroline Tupa was born October 24, 1922 to Belle (Musilek) and Joseph H. Tupa in rural Tabor, Bon Homme County. As a young girl, her family moved to the Martin area where her family farmed. Her early school years were spent there. After a brief return to the Lake Andes area, Lenora and her family relocated to a farm northwest of Burton in Keya Paha County, NE. As a young woman she worked as a hired girl for a local farm family and later for a doctor in Lincoln, NE. She met her husband, Gerald Cook, when he came to the Tupa farm to borrow a team of horses. Lenora and Gerald were married July 6, 1942 in Lincoln, NE and started out ranching near Burton, NE, on the Lee Wicker place. After two years they moved to the Seiler place. In 1949 they purchased the Charlie Peterson ranch southeast of Mills, NE, living there until 1969. Then they moved into Mills, NE, where they spent the remainder of their married life. Lenora and Gerald celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in 1992. During these years Lenora worked growing a large garden, canning, milking cows, cooking, raising chickens, and working in the hay field as needed. She enjoyed sewing, not only mending, but sewing clothes for her family. Lenora developed a love and talent for painting as a member of a local painting class. In her later years Lenora moved to Gregory. As a Gregory resident she enjoyed attending senior meals and visiting with her friends there. Throughout her life Lenora enjoyed music and dancing. Attending the dances at Carlock with her friends was a great source of pleasure and entertainment. In 2012 Lenora represented the Mills community as the grand marshal in the 4th of July parade in Gregory. Lenora died February 13, 2015 at the Avera Rosebud Country Care Center in Gregory at 92 years of age. She was preceded in death by her husband, Gerald; her parents, Joe and Belle Tupa; two brothers, Lumir (Slim) and William; and a son-in-law, John Jones. Survivors include two sons, Jack and his wife Gloria of Kimball, NE, Ted and his wife Cindy of Crystal, MN; three daughters, Challice Jones of Milan, Missouri, Joan and husband Richard Gambrell of Fountain Hills, AZ, and Janet and husband Dean Ferguson of Springview, NE; 15 grandchildren; 28 great-grandchildren; and by nieces, nephews, other relatives, and a host of friends.

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