John Irving Olmsted

Thursday, August 1, 2019

John Irving Olmsted

Jan. 30, 1933 - July 31, 2019

GOTHENBURG, Neb. — John Irving Olmsted passed away Wednesday, July 31, 2019, at his home in Gothenburg, after a valiant battle with colon cancer. He was 86 years old.

John and his twin brother, Gene, were born on Jan. 30, 1933, at Wauneta, Neb., to parents, Frederick and Beulah (Hann) Olmsted. He graduated from Wauneta High School. He continued his education at Kearney State College and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in education.

On April 24, 1952, he entered the U.S. Air Force and proudly served his country until his honorable discharge on April 7, 1956.

John was united in marriage on Sept. 8, 1963, to Karen “Kay” Lynn Moon, at the United Methodist Church in Wauneta. To this union three daughters were born. They made their home in Gothenburg, where John taught history and geography at the junior high school from 1965-1972. He also worked for Boise Crane, Goshen Rubber, KK Appliance, Dawson County Welfare, and prior to retiring, drove a fuel delivery truck.

John was an honest, upright man who loved God and was a Bible scholar. He was a devoted member of Gothenburg First United Methodist Church and Bible study group. He enjoyed bowling, winning silver and bronze in the Cornhusker games. Other favorites included playing pool and cards. His pride and joy were his grandchildren.

Preceding him in death were his parents, Fred and Beulah Olmsted; infant daughter, Racheal Olmsted; and brother, Larry Olmsted.

Survivors include his wife of almost 56 years, Kay Olmsted of Gothenburg; daughters, Michelle K. (Olmsted) Chew of Gothenburg and Rebecca A. Olmsted of Lincoln; granddaughter, Amelia R. (Chew) Barber of Aurora, Colo.; grandson, John Edward Independence Chew of Estes Park, Colo.; brothers, Frederick Olmsted of Brother, Iowa and twin brother, Gene Olmsted, of Powell, Wyo.; numerous family and a host of friends.

Memorials may be given in his name.

Visitation is today, Aug. 2, 2019, at First United Methodist Church in Gothenburg until 7 p.m. Friends may go online at to extend words of comfort to the family.

Funeral service will be Saturday, Aug. 3, 2019, 11 a.m. CST at First United Methodist Church in Gothenburg with Rev. Jamie Norwich McLennan officiating. Burial will be Saturday, Aug. 3, 2019, 4 p.m. CST at Riverside Cemetery in Wauneta with military honors.

Herrmann Jones Funeral Chapel of McCook, Neb., is entrusted with arrangements.