Donald E. Soukup
January 3, 1930-July 9, 2019
Don E. Soukup died peacefully early Tuesday morning, July 9, 2019, at Seward Memorial Hospital.
Services were held at Holy Trinity Church in Brainard. The wake service was held at 7:30 p.m. on July 12. The funeral service was held at 10:30 a.m. on July 13.Memorials will be to the Don Soukup family, designated for family choice; condolences online at Zabka-Perdue Funeral Home.
Donald E. Soukup was born to Edward and Lucille (Bruner) Soukup on Jan. 3, 1930. He was the oldest of four children. During his childhood he attended District #45, a rural school, for eight years. It was about six miles southwest of Brainard. He attended Dwight Assumption Parochial School his freshman year, and completed his last three years at Brainard High School (now, East Butler). He graduated in May, 1947, and began farming with his father, Edward.
Don joined the Army on Jan.17, 1951. He and Vangie Bouc were engaged in May of 1951. He completed 13 weeks of basic training at Fort Riley, Kansas, and was sent to Korea manning an artillery Howitzer gun clearing the way for the infantry ground troops. He was stationed at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, from June to August, 1952.
The couple was married on Thursday, Sept. 11, 1952, at St. Mary's Church in Valparaiso, prior to his assignment in Austria and Germany. After his discharge, they lived in a small house seven miles southwest of Brainard where one daughter, Donna Lynn, was born. The couple moved southeast of Ulysses where another daughter, Valerie Lea, was born.
Don was employed by Western Electric for two years. In 1963, the family moved to the “home place” farm and lived there for 30 years. In 1993, they built a ranch style house in which they now reside. The family attended Holy Trinity Church; the two children spent their elementary years at Holy Trinity Parochial School. Their high school years were at East Butler Public school where Don and Vangie were loyal fans of the girls' school events.
Don farmed for 63 years, retiring in 2017. He kept busy doing yard work and odd jobs around the farm. He was an active church board member, a Northrup King Seed dealer, and loved to hunt, fish, bowl, play pool and cards. He especially enjoyed “Darda” and passed his Darda-playing skills on to his grandchildren.
His greatest joys were his seven grandchildren, his nine great-grandchildren, and receiving the Quilt of Valor in March. Don also has a brick at the Memorial Wall at Columbus, and one at Evergreen Park in Brainard which commemorates his service to his country.
Don loved to attend the grandchildren's activities, especially watching the boys play baseball. He gave four-wheeler Honda rides which were a favorite of all the grandchildren and great-grandchildren. He had a beloved cat named Pepper who also rode the Honda with him, every day.
Survivors include wife, Vangie Soukup; daughters, Donna (Ron) Furasek, Valerie (Dave) Tvrdy; seven grandchildren: Jonathan (Allison) Furasek, Jessica Furasek and Ryan Smith, Amanda Furasek, Zachary (Erin) Furasek, Joseph Furasek, Candice (Matt) Martin, Ashley (Ryan) Holt; nine great-grandchildren: Lucie and Addy Furasek, Nevaeh Tyler, Trinity and Stryker Youngblood, Derek Martin, Maeble, Jordon and Jackson Holt; one brother, Merlyn Soukup; two sisters, Maxine Armstead and Darlene (Edwin) Kudlacek; many cousins and friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Edward and Lucille Soukup; parents-in-law, John and Adeline Bouc; his sister-in-law, Gail Soukup; and a nephew, Allen Kudlacek, who died in the Vietnam War.