Ken Fritzler, 68, of Broken Bow, entered into glory July 9, 2013, at Bryan West Hospital in Lincoln, with family at his side.
Ken was born May 18, 1945, to Kenneth C. and Doris (Eastman) Fritzler in Omaha. The family moved to Kimball, where he graduated from Kimball County High School in 1963. He attended the University of Nebraska Lincoln, where he played tenor sax in the marching band, which gave him the opportunity to travel to the Orange Bowl with the football team.
He was affiliated with the Triangle Fraternity and a member of Beta Gamma Sigma. He received his bachelor’s degree in 1967 in business administration. Ken then went on to receive his Juris Doctor degree from the UNL College of Law in 1970, graduating in the top 10 percent of his class. He was the editor of the Law Review and was a member of the Nebraska Chapter of The Order of the Coif.
Following graduation from law school, Ken was affiliated with the firm of Baylor, Evenen, Baylor and Urbom in Lincoln. After moving to Kearney in 1971, he was a member of the Tye, Worlock, Tye and Jacobsen law firm. In 1974, he joined Ross and Schroeder and was part of the law firm of Ross, Schroeder and Fritzler until 1989. From 1989 until his retirement in 2006, he practiced on his own in both Kearney and briefly in Broken Bow.
Ken married Linda Pape May 27, 1972. To that union were born three children; Paul, Sarah, and Rebekah. While raising his family in Kearney, Ken’s favorite pastimes included sailing, camping and fishing, riding his motorcycle, and flying his plane. He served many years on the Board of Mental Health of Buffalo County.
Ken had an affinity for the game of cribbage and served on various committees promoting performing arts in the community. He sang in barbershop quartets and choruses most of his life including the Plum Creek Men’s Chorus of Lexington and 1733 Chorus of Kearney.
October 3, 2002, Ken was united in marriage to Carol Repke (Jaskierny) of Broken Bow, where the couple made their home. Ken thoroughly enjoyed living in Custer County, where he claimed he never met anyone he didn’t like. He loved his cats, flowers and house in Broken Bow. Nothing pleased him more than seeing the outside decorations and having the house lit up for the holidays.
Ken led a very active life during retirement. He had a special liking for “Public Power” people and looked forward to all the rural electric meetings he attended with Carol, especially the Power Drive rallies and the annual meeting of the Nebraska Rural Electric Association. With their combined love of the performing arts and history, the couple traveled extensively to attend concerts and events, both in Nebraska and neighboring states.
Throughout the years they were active in Custer County Friends of the Arts, supported concert associations and theater groups in North Platte, Kearney, Grand Island and Lincoln, as well as the Nebraska Historical Society, Custer County Historical Society and NET Foundations for Television & Radio. Two of his favorite trips were touring the coal mines in Wyoming, and traveling to Minnesota to see Garrison Keillor in a live performance of “A Prairie Home Companion”.
Another favorite activity was volunteering at the “Visitors Barn” on Scenic Byway 2, which gave him a chance to talk with those who stopped to get information. He was energized by going to auctions and socializing with the people. Ken never met a stranger and would not hesitate to ask anyone to explain the meaning of what was printed on the tee-shirt they were wearing or describe what kind of motorcycle they were riding.
Ken was preceded in death by his parents and sister, Nancy Anne Fritzler Morris.
Ken is survived by his wife, Carol; son Paul Fritzler (Erin) of Chatsworth, Calif.; daughters, Sarah Zulkoski (John) of Kearney, and Rebekah Moritz (Brian) of Omaha; grandchildren, Rachael Nelson, Henry and Hayden Moritz all of Omaha; sisters, Janet Huntley (Jim) of Diamond Bar, Calif., Beth Elliott (Pat Kendall) of Fort Collins, Colo.; and step-sister, Carolyn Opitz (Dr. Jim) of Marshfiled, Wisc.; and a host of aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, nephews and stepchildren. In addition, Ken will be missed by his lifelong friend, Patrick Faden of Lincoln, and dear friend Xavier Mayorga of Ooltewah, Tenn. And, he will be very much missed by his furry buddies, Sneakers and Silver.
A Celebration of Life was Saturday, July 13, 2013, at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in Kearney, with the Rev. Fr. Jerry Ness officiating. Music for the celebration was provided by St. Luke’s organist, Joyce Wubbels and the St. Luke’s Band. The barbershop quartet Habitat 4 Harmony provided music during the Afterglow lunch following the service in the St. Luke’s Fellowship Hall. Inurnment is in the church columbarium. Memorials are suggested to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society – Mid America Chapter or to the family for future designation.
Published in Custer County Chief, July 18, 2013