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Kenny J. Fernau

Apr 2, 2024 (0)

Atkinson —Kenny Jay Fernau, 81, of Atkinson, died Saturday, March 30, 2024 at the Norfolk Veteran's Home in Norfolk.

Visitation will be held from 10-11:30 a.m. on Thursday, April 4, 2024 at Biglin's Mortuary in O'Neill.

Graveside services will be held at noon on Thursday, April 4, 2024 at the Inman Cemetery in Inman with military rites provided by the O'Neill American Legion Simonson Post 93.

Memorials may be made to the family for future designation.

Kenny was born on Aug. 11, 1942, to William and Evelyn (Knapp) Fernau in Wahoo. He grew up in Verdel, later moving to Butte. He attended school in Butte, Spencer and Lynch graduating in 1961.  

Kenny married Hallie Carsten in Lynch in 1961. To this union five children were born.  

He enlisted in the U.S. Army on Sept. 26, 1961. He served as Unit Supply Specialist, an Engineering Supply Specialist and was an Honor Graduate of the General Supply Specialist U.S. Army QuarterMaster School in Fort Lee, VA in 1965. He served in Germany and two Tours of Duty in Vietnam. Kenny was recognized as an expert rifleman and received numerous awards including the National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal with two Bronze Stars, Vietnam Campaign Medal, Vietnam Cross of Gallantry with Palm, multiple Good Conduct Medals and Army Service, Overseas Service, NCO Professional Development Ribbons. He was Honorably Discharged on Sept. 30, 1981.

Upon his return to Inman, he worked for Foree Tire.  

Kenny married Nancy Johnson (Kopejtka) on June 4, 1984, in Yankton, SD.  

He then worked for Gillette Dairy and shortly after moved to Atkinson, where he farmed for Andy Gobel Jr. This time was spent in the hay and corn fields as well as working on the Ostrich Farm on the west side of Atkinson. After moving into town, Kenny worked for Atkinson Township and Warren Funk before retiring in 2019.  

Kenny moved to the Norfolk Veterans Home in 2020.

  Kenny was a member of the O'Neill Eagles Club, O'Neill American Legion and the O'Neill and Atkinson Methodist Church.  

In his free time, he enjoyed fishing, camping, hunting and gardening. He had a passion for reading and kept everyone laughing with his quick wit and humorous jokes. He enjoyed playing cards, cooking and spending time with family and friends.

  Kenny is survived by his six children Kim (Percy) Boudreaux of Beaumont, Texas, Howard (Tammy) Fernau of Norfolk, William (Kailey) Fernau of Stanton, Angela (Jim) Pfeiffer of Lincoln, Tara Johnson-Jameson of Holdrege and Nicole (Kyle) Campbell of Inman; 19 grandchildren; 24 great-grandchildren; two brothers Kerry Fernau of Ainsworth and Kane (Deb) of Nashville, TN; one sister Karen (Sam) Knepper of Butte; and many nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents, his wife Nancy, two infant children Kenny J. Fernau Jr. and Annabethlynn Fernau, one sister-in-law Karen Fernauand one granddaughter Kara Brianne Fernau.                   


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