Donald Soller, 92 of Gothenburg, NE died February 8, 2022 at Hilltop Estates, Gothenburg, NE.
Donald Lyle Soller, 92, of Gothenburg, Nebraska, passed away on February 8, 2022 at Hilltop Estates, Gothenburg, Nebraska.
Donald was born on July 29, 1929 to Albert and Edith Soller in Gothenburg. Edith passed when Donald was young and Albert married Alice Sheffield, who raised Donald along with his father.
Donald attended country school and Gothenburg High School. He then began work on the family ranch alongside his father where he remained employed until 1962.
In 1949, Don’s life would be forever changed when he first met the woman who would become his wife of sixty-nine years, Beverly Nielsen, at a rodeo he was riding in.
In July of 1951, when he was just shy of 22 years old, Don was drafted into the U.S. Army. He and Beverly exchanged letters while he was stationed at Fort Leonard, Missouri, soon to be shipped out to Korea. Before leaving for Korea, however, Don received a medical Honorable Discharge once it was discovered he had severe thyroid disease.
Donald and Beverly were united in marriage in April of 1952. They were blessed with two sons, Michael and Patrick.
After leaving the ranch in 1962, Don went to work hauling cattle for Amie Guerin. Don was quite a trucker and did a lot of it. Even buying his own truck and continuing to pull for Amie and later for himself, before changing ventures and trucking for Stebbins Implement of Gothenburg. The job entailed hauling machinery and equipment.
Don’s association with Stebbins was only beginning. In addition to doing the company trucking, he was the shop foreman for the business as well. Don was employed there for nearly twenty years. He even had an owners share of the company and remained with the company until the time it was sold.
After the sale of Stebbins, Don went to work for Dawson County Department of Roads. There he was a jack of all trades, mowing, working on and fixing equipment, building and fabricating parts for equipment out of material from other machinery among other things. He was very invaluable to the county indeed, and he stayed employed there until the time of his retirement around 1996.
Rodeo was a lifelong passion for Don. He participated in rodeos beginning in his younger years, riding bucking horses and occasionally even bulls, but it was the bareback horses where he really had the talent. Most often he finished in the top three.
Rodeo was such a draw for Don, he didn’t hang his spurs up even long after most cowboys had given up the sport. He continued to compete in a senior rodeo circuit, riding barebacks in rodeos for cowboys over 50 years of age, and riding them well.
In his later years, it was watching rodeo that Don enjoyed, rather in person or on television, he could be found glued to the action.
Don was also a magician when it came to building, inventing, welding, fabricating, and creating. There was nothing he couldn’t do with little more than some time, a bit of iron and an idea. Neighbors, family and friends were always coming by, asking for some help with something needing fixed, built or repaired. Not to mention the items that Don invented in his shop that saved his neighbors, his sons or a friend time and hassle by having a new piece of equipment created by Don to make things easier or more convenient. Enough cannot be said about his brilliance when it came to his ability fabricate and create anything at all someone would ask him for.
Donald was preceded in death by his parents, his wife, Beverly Soller, his son, Michael Soller, and great-grandson, Gauge Soller.
Surviving Donald are his mother, Alice Soller-Hutchison of Gothenburg; son, Patrick Soller of Gothenburg; granddaughters Katy and Anny Soller, both of Gothenburg; great-grandsons, Shaddix Soller, Kayvin Soller, Tydus Soller and Cylas Soller, all of Gothenburg; great-granddaughter Kayla (Brett) Mann of Gothenburg; great-great-granddaughter Marlee Mann of Gothenburg; numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.
Visitation will be held Sunday, February 13, 2022, 1:00 - 3:00 pm at Blase-Strauser Memorial Chapel with family present.
Funeral Services will be held Monday, February 14, 2022, 2:00 pm at Blase-Strauser Memorial Chapel with Rev. David Boyd officiating.
Burial will follow at Gothenburg Cemetery.
Memorials may be directed to the Gothenburg Honor Guard.