Dolores Ann Ludgera Thomassen was born in a Knox County Nebraska farmhouse on a Sunday morning in July 1924 while the rest of her family was at church. She was the 12th of thirteen children born to Wilhelm Thomassen, a German immigrant and Theckla Neppl Thomassen, from Roselle, Iowa.
Dolores learned early that life wasn’t easy, especially when she contracted rheumatic fever after the first grade and had to miss a year of school. She eventually recovered, but she never would take life and health for granted.
Dolores went to St Ludger’s Academy in Creighton, NE through high school and was named valedictorian of her class of 14 in 1942.
Since it was war time (WWII), Dolores’ first job was in the rationing office at the County Courthouse in Center, NE. She then moved on to the Civil Services district offices in Sioux City, IA. In 1945, she moved to Omaha and attended Creighton University while working part time. In 1947 she went to work full time at Union Pacific where she met the love of her life, John Joseph Weisbecker.
John and Dolores were married on October 8, 1949 at St Ludger’s Church in Creighton, NE. Their honeymoon took them to Denver, Colorado and Cheyenne, WY. Dolores timidly experienced the mountains for the first time. After two weeks on the road, they made their home in Omaha.
John had been in the Army during World War II and remained in the reserves. He was recalled to active duty in 1950 for the Korean War and left Dolores to experience much of her first pregnancy and most of the first year of Joan’s (her oldest child) life without him.
They went on to have six more children, twins Bill and Tom, Sue, Jean, Mary, and Betty. Dolores was a tireless homemaker and mom while John continued to work for Union Pacific until retirement. Things might have been tight, but they made it work with one income and one car. It was important to them that all seven children went to Catholic grade and high schools.
After John passed away in December 1991 at the age of 73. Dolores continued to live her frugal lifestyle. Her kids were able to convince her to buy a new home in West Omaha where she would live independently for the next 18 years. She still saved her pennies, opting to forgo things like cable TV and the internet. She loved to have family come stay with her and she doted on her grandkids when they came to visit.
Dolores was humble woman with a giving spirit. She focused on her faith and family with everything she did. She was not prideful, but she was very proud of her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. She claimed that she didn’t ever want a fuss made over her and she insisted on staying out of the limelight. She was a health enthusiast, a creative cook, and a devout Catholic.
In the last few years, her family and the staff at The Lighthouse at Lakeside Village discovered that she did, in fact, like to be “fussed” over. She always had a bright smile on her face when family members came to visit. She was a very special woman who always put others first, so her smiles and love meant the world to them.
She was a woman of strong faith and loved sewing, cooking, gardening and her family.
In typical Dolores fashion, she waited to make sure all her siblings were through the pearly gates before taking her turn. On Monday, October 31, 2022, she was welcomed into eternal life by husband John, brothers Frank, Peter, Henry, William, Leo, Elmer, George and Paul and sisters Josephine, Sophie, Irene, and Adelaide. She is at peace. She is with family. She is home!
She is survived by her children, Joan (Doug) Mann, Bill (Lilly) Weisbecker, Rev. Fr. Tom Weisbecker, Sue (Dan) Peak, Jean (Mike) Kieffer, Mary (Randy) Kreis, and Betty (Alan) Bromley; 17 grandchildren, 9 great grandchildren.
A Special Thank You for the wonderful caregivers at the Lighthouse, Serene and Endless Journey Hospice Service providers.
VISITATION: Sunday Nov. 6, at St. James Catholic Church beginning at 3pm with a WAKE SERVICE at 5pm.
MASS OFCHRISTIAN BURIAL: Monday, Nov 7th , 10:30am at St. James Catholic Church.
Interment, Calvary Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, Memorials to St. James Memorial Fund or your favorite charity.
To view the Monday Services, go to: Stjamescatholicchurch.org and scroll to Mass Video.
JOHN A. GENTLEMAN MORTUARIES AND CREMATORY
1010 North 72 Street