Karen Lynn Dicke Reiners was born on Dec. 1, 1966, to Leonard and Shirley Dicke in McCook, Neb. From the moment she entered this world, much to the chagrin of her older sister and brother, she was a pistol. Early on she showed the natural Dicke athletic ability and devoted hours and hours to gymnastics. In fact, least half of every day was spent upside down on her hands, which might explain some of her later quirky tendences. Unfortunately, she soon showed the natural Dicke proclivity for height, so gymnastics were traded for swimming and volleyball, which she excelled at.
After high school, Karen earned her LPN degree from Mid-Plains Community College in North Platte and worked off and on in the medical field for quite some time.
Karen was a devoted mother to her two daughters and built her days around them, going to every school program, every sporting event. She devoted hours to volunteering at school and teaching Sunday School at church. Karen will be sorely missed by the school and her church. She enjoyed cooking large amazing meals for her family and many a niece and nephew put in their request for her famous chocolate cheesecake. She was devoted to her parents and extended family also, always the first one to help out with any problems.
Karen's quick wit and whimsical sense of humor left most people in hysterics when conversing with her. And her razor-sharp sarcastic side rarely found its match. She would have made the perfect improv comedienne, she was that quick. Her humor would make many a sad day, a little brighter.
Many people call themselves a Husker fan, but few can be truly classed as a rabid Husker fan. Karen was a rabid Husker fan. She lived red, breathed red and could yell loud enough to be heard all the way to Memorial Stadium. Is it any wonder that red was her favorite color?
Her life was not an easy life. Stricken with several chronic diseases at a very early age, she was a regular "guest" at the hospital and had so many surgeries, that some members of her family suggested having a zipper installed on her belly. Pain and adversity were her constant companions, but they did not define her. She never let them define her. Most people only saw the big beautiful smile and heard the easy laugh. I dare say if any one of us had to live with the amount of pain she endured on a daily basis, we would quickly melt into a puddle. But Karen didn't, she stayed positive; she fought every day to just be "normal," and most of the time she succeeded. She laughed. She loved. She lived each day to its fullest.
Karen had strength of character that could not be suppressed. She built a strong faith in God that could not be suppressed. It buoyed her up in the rough times and gave her a soft place to land. Her faith was her rock and she clung to it. She had a spirit that could not be suppressed.
Karen was like a wild mustang, no matter who or what tried to break her spirit, it could not be broken, because her spirit was anchored in her rock solid faith in a God who was preparing a place for her in heaven.
Karen passed from this world on Nov. 28, 2009, at the age of 42 years, 11 months, 28 days doing what she liked best -- helping others. Karen is survived by the two daughters that she loved more than life itself, Lindy Pleiss and husband, Phil of North Platte; Jane Reiners of Indianola; her parents Leonard and Shirley Dicke of McCook; brother Larry Dicke and wife Theresa of McCook; sister Janice Ashby and husband, Jim of Geneva; and Hailee (the most adorable grandbaby ever to grace the planet, according to Karen) and soon to be grandson - Zachary Paul, many aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, cousins, family and friends; and her beloved friend Jeff and her devoted dog Brady.
Karen was one of those special people.
Those special people who burn so brightly that they light up the whole world. Karen lit up every life she touched. And she touched a lot of lives.
Karen's flame was snuffed out far too soon. We all wanted more time to bask in its glow. But God had other plans for this special woman.
And the world is a little darker today without her.
Funeral services will be Thursday, Dec.3, 2009, at 11 a.m. at St. John's Lutheran Church in Culbertson with Pastor Bradley Rick officiating. Casket will be open to the public at the church, prior to the service. Cremation will follow the service and inurnment will be at a later date in Memorial Park Cemetery.
Memorials are being accepted in her name.
Friends and family may sign her book at the funeral home or leave condolences on-line at www.carpenterbreland.com
Carpenter Breland Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.