Donald Bennett, 88

Donald Bennett, 88 of Kearney, died Friday, April 8, 2011, at his residence in Kearney. Services were Wednesday, April 13, 2011, at O'Brien - Straatmann Funeral Home in Kearney with the Rev. Gary Main officiating. Interment was April 13 at the Pleasant Valley Cemetery in Pleasanton, with military honors provided by the Pleasanton American Legion. O'Brien - Straatmann Funeral Home of Kearney was in charge of arrangements. Donald Leroy Bennett was born May 16, 1922, near Mason City, to Fred and Gertrude (Wing) Bennett. After graduating from Mason City High School, he completed a year of college before enlisting in the Army in 1942. During WWII he served in the European Theater of Operations until his honorable discharge in 1946. Donald married Elizabeth Crouch of Broken Bow May 24, 1950, and they enjoyed 58 years together. Starting as a telegrapher with the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy, he became an agent and eventually a railroad officer with the Burlington Northern Railroad during his 34-year career. Donald and Elizabeth lived and worked in Broken Bow, Litchfield, Seneca, Custer, S.D. and Alliance. In 1984, the couple retired to Kearney. Donald was a member of the Masonic Lodge, Elks, Eagle's, American Legion and VFW. A devoted husband, father and grandfather, Donald also enjoyed woodworking and gardening. Left to cherish his memory are daughters, Barbara of Gladstone, Mo., and Nancy Unick and husband, Ben of Pleasanton; son Mark and wife Carolyn of Seguin, Texas; grandchildren, Eugene Unick and wife, Rachel, Geoffrey Unick, Catherine, Christopher and Margaret Bennett; brother, Roy Bennett and his wife, Darlene of Yakima, Wash.; many nieces and nephews and several close friends and neighbors. Donald was preceded in death by his parents; wife, Elizabeth; and siblings, Warren, Gene, and Carrie. Memorials are suggested to the donors choice. Online condolences or personal reflections may be submitted at