Celebration of Life for Lula Gale Lybarger
Lula “Lu” Gale Lybarger, age 89, passed away peacefully on September 14, 2023 surrounded by her loving family in Omaha, Nebraska. Lu was born, along with her twin sister Lola, on February 14, 1934 in Arcadia, Nebraska to Frank and Irene (Swayze) White.
Lu grew up in Arcadia, Nebraska and married her high school sweetheart, Max Lybarger on July 4, 1954. After moving to Lincoln, Nebraska, Max graduated from Wesleyan University and became employed by the VA Hospital in 1957. In 1966, the couple moved to Virginia where Max began his administrative career with the VA Hospital. Lu was a dedicated VA wife for 38 years accompanying Max around the United States. Lu was always responsible for coordinating all the packing and moving for the 9 various moves. Their travels included Falls Church, VA; Livermore, CA; Fresno, CA; Vienna, VA; Lexington, KY; Pittsburgh, PA; Santa Monica, CA; Tacoma, WA; and finally back home to Lincoln in 1979. Lu called their daughter, Nan, attending Kearney State College and happily sang the Nebraska fight song to announce their transfer back to Lincoln! After 40 years in Lincoln, the couple moved to Lakeside Village in Omaha to be closer to Nan and her family.
Lu is survived by her husband Max Lybarger, daughter Nan Garrison and son-in-law Mike Garrison, grandchildren Kristin Reed (husband Josh), and Grant Garrison; plus two very special grandsons Brayden and Landon Reed. Those “two little boys”, as she referred to them, brought so much joy and smiles to their Great Grandma. Lu was happiest when her family of 9 would celebrate birthdays, holidays or just going out for dinner followed by a Runza chocolate ice cream cone.
Although her family is biased, we believe Lu was one of the kindest, gentle and generous people we know. She was always worried about others before herself, wishing success for everyone and bringing joy to those around her. She was frequently known to slip a $20 bill in someone’s pocket on for no reason but to help someone out. That is just who Lu was.
Travel and friends were also an important part of Lu’s life as they were fortunate to be able to see so much of the country with their long-time friends the Wusters, Smiths and Crewdsons.
Finally, Lu was an avid and die-hard Husker fan from football to volleyball to men’s and women’s basketball. She would read every article word by word she could get her hands on. We joked that we would put her up against just about anyone on Husker trivia or most sports topics! Near the end of life when her speech was limited, she fired up one more time to say “Go Big Red” with a little attitude and sass for the last time!
Lu was preceded in death by her parents, sister Lucille Minne (husband Lewis), brother Thomas White (wife Evelyn), sister Gertrude Kyron (husband George), brother Wayne White (wife Wilma), brother Calvin White, and twin sister Lola Wilmot (husband Paul).
Though we mourn the loss of our wife, mother, grandmother and great grandmother, we find solace in the memories we shared and the profound impact she had on our lives. Her love will continue to guide and inspire us, and she will forever hold a very special place in our hearts. We’ll always call you our family’s matriarch just to keep the teasing and smiles going a bit. We love you!
Memorials: Arcadia Cemetery, Arcadia, Nebraska