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Saturday, Jan. 31, 2015

Roland 'Stretch' Welch

Thursday, July 21, 2005

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March 17, 1914-July 19, 2005

KEARNEY -- Roland "Stretch" Welch, 91, died Tuesday (July 19, 2005), at Good Samaritan Hospital in Kearney.

He was born March 17, 1914, at Manning, Iowa, to Benjamin and Abel (Deitz) Welch. He graduated from Gray High School in Iowa in 1931 and earned a bachelor of arts in accounting from Morningside College in Iowa in 1937. He then earned a master's degree in business administration at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and began teaching at Kearney Normal College in 1939.

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His teaching career was interrupted during his service in the U.S. Army during World War II. He was stationed in Aberdeen, Md., San Antonio, Texas and Burlington, Iowa. He was honorably discharge July 6, 1946, the day before the Korean conflict started.

He returned to Kearney Normal College serving as the Business Department chairman from 1958-1973. He continued as a business professor until retiring in 1979 and then taught part-time until 1988. In 1989, the Business Department office building was named in his honor. In 1959 he joined seven other individuals in establishing the Kearney State College Foundation and he served as treasurer of that foundation from 1959-1980.

He was a member of the First Presbyterian Church; the Kearney Elks Lodge No. 984; Veterans of Foreign Wars Post No. 759; Kearney Chamber of Commerce; the Good Fellows; the Kearney Country Club; the Masonic Lodge; and the Nebraska South Central Senior Golf Association.

He was preceded in death by his parents; his first wife, Elaine (Deforest); two brothers, Merlin and an infant brother; a brother-in-law, Mac McCullough; and a sister-in-law, Bobby Welch.

Survivors include his wife, Doris (Hein) Welch of Kearney; two sons, Ben and wife, Pat of Kearney and Chuck and wife, Cathy of Hanover, N.H.; one daughter, Ronda and husband, Dave Dostal of Omaha; step-son, Steve and wife, Sally Frick of Omaha; two step-daughters, Sandi and husband, Bob Irons of Lincoln, and Sue and husband, Bruce Helms of Holbrook; one sister, Dorothy McCullough of Hastings; one brother, Orrin Welch of Shreveport, La.; 21 grandchildren; 10 great-grandchildren; 7 nieces; and one nephew.

Services will be Friday, 2 p.m., at the First Presbyterian Church in Kearney with the Rev. Charles Olsen officiating. A private interment will take place at the Kearney Cemetery at a later date.

There will be no visitation.

Memorials may be addressed to First Presbyterian Church in Kearney; or the R.B. Welch Family Memorial Fund in care of the UNK Foundation.

Online condolences or personal reflections can be submitted at www.osafh.com

O'Brien-Straatmaan-Apfel Funeral Home of Kearney is in charge of arrangements.