Walter Eugene Applegarth, 84, of Beatrice, Nebraska, passed away Monday, August 31, 2020 following a cancer diagnosis just two weeks earlier. Funeral services will be held Saturday, Sept 5th at 10am at the Finish Line Church of the Nazarene in Beatrice. Family will greet friends Friday, Sept 4th from 5pm-7pm at the church. The funeral on Saturday will be live-streamed on the Facebook page of Dennis Applegarth.
Walt was born in Morrowville, Kansas on June 6, 1936 to John and Ruby (Boston) Applegarth, the 9th of 14 children. On June 23, 1957, he married the love of his life, Judy Stamm, and the couple lived in Grovetown, Georgia from 1959 to 1961, where Walt served as a training and coding specialist in the U.S. Army. In 1962 they settled in Steele City, Nebraska, where Walt owned a TV repair shop and an army surplus store, and worked for the railroad. In 1973 they moved to Beatrice, where Walt served as terminal manager for Canning Truck Service. Walt drove Mayflower moving vans all over the country, and loved to sing “I’ve been everywhere” and other truck drivers’ songs. He later drove for Beatrice Freight Line and All Ways Freight Line as well, and was well known for his talent at packing a moving van. Walt and Judy founded The Rental Center in 1976, which they operated until their retirement in 2005.
Walt and Judy were proud parents of three boys and two girls, “three of a kind and a pair – a full house” as Walt liked to say. However, not content to play with only those cards, they were dealt three more, adopting three daughters who were lovingly welcomed into the family, and to this day are precious to us all. On the day of Judy’s death on April 24, 2019, Walt suffered a massive heart attack, a 100% blockage. While a skilled medical team was able to extend his life, he never recovered from the loss of his precious bride, and his recent death was as much from a broken heart as from cancer.
Walt and Judy were dedicated members of The Gideons International and the First Church of the Nazarene (later called the Finish Line Church). They loved their kids and grandkids, and they loved to share with others what Jesus had done for them. Their children own them both an eternal debt of gratitude for the godly heritage they provided.
Walt is survived by three sons, Dennis and wife Norma, of Beatrice, Doug and wife Nicki of York, and Darrel and wife Marissa of Lake Jackson, TX; five daughters, Teri and husband Steve Bade of Cadillac MI, Toni and husband Roger Clarin of Onamia, MN, Jenny and husband Tanner Hoyt of Lincoln, NE, Chantal States of Lincoln, NE, and Sierra and husband Michael McHenry of Paragould, AR. He is also survived by brother Fred (Marilyn) Applegarth, and sisters Elsie Hughes, Dorothy (Don) Kershner, Arva (Herb) Wenger, Della (Steve) Goldsberry, and Wilma (Bob) Thompson, along with a host of grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces, nephews, family and friends.
He was preceded in death by his beloved wife Judy, grandson Oliver States, parents John and Ruby (Boston) Applegarth, brothers Ray, Bill, Ernest, and Elmer Applegarth, and sisters Grace Haak, Mildred Fogle, and Edith Love.
A memorial has been established to The Gideons International, with Neil VanBoening in charge. Harman-Wright Mortuary & Crematory in Beatrice in charge of arrangements.
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