DONIPHAN - Donald Lee Rathman, 84, of Doniphan passed away Sunday, Nov. 22, at CHI Health St. Francis in Grand Island after battling COVID-19.
Mass of Christian Burial will be at 11 a.m. Wednesday, Dec. 9, at St. Ann's Catholic Church in Doniphan. Celebrating Mass will be the Rev. Adam Sughroue. Livestreaming will be available on the All Faiths Funeral Home Facebook page. Burial will be in Doniphan Cedarview Cemetery, with military honors by the U.S. Army and United Veterans Honor Guard.
Visitation will be from 4 to 6 p.m. Tuesday, with a Rosary at 6, at All Faiths Funeral Home in Grand Island. To help protect others, face masks are required for the visitation and funeral Mass.
All Faiths Funeral Home is entrusted with the arrangements. Memorials are suggested to St. Ann's Catholic Church or to the family for further designation.
Don was born Oct. 5, 1936, to Walter and Norma (Bourg) Rathman at Prosser. He was a proud member of the Wood River High School Class of 1955.
He joined the U.S. Army on the same day he had two flat tires in one day. Don ended up serving with the Third Infantry Regiment, known as "The Old Guard," the Presidential Ceremonial Unit, The Honor Guard. He was on the 7-man firing squad for the 21-gun salute for funerals at Arlington, Va.
When Don was discharged from the Army, he met the love of his life, Laveda Kroeger of Doniphan, at a wedding dance. He always said he had to cross the Platte River to find her. Don and Laveda celebrated their 61st wedding anniversary together on Nov. 11, 2020.
Don was a very active agent in the Professional Insurance Agents of Nebraska. He loved the association and served in several capacities. He received a National Award for Membership Recruitment in 1981. In 1982, he was voted Nebraska Agent of the Year. He served as president of the organization from 1985 to 1986 and later served on the board of directors. He was chairman for several projects, including scholarship events. He retired after 50 years in the industry.
He was an active member of St. Ann's Catholic Church in Doniphan, was a charter member of the Doniphan Lions Club and served as club treasurer for many years, and was a charter member of the St. Ann's Knights of Columbus Council 11824, where he held all of the offices of that organization. He enjoyed golfing and cheering for the Huskers.
Those left to cherish Don's memory are his wife of 61 years, Laveda Rathman of Doniphan; son, David (Teri) Rathman of Omaha; daughter, Darla Rathman Treacy of Springfield, Mo.; grandchildren, Michael Rathman, Karli Rathman, Grace Rathman, Darian (Jake) Spindler, Kaleb Treacy and Zach (Charlie) Treacy; great-grandchildren, Gatlin Treacy and Addison Treacy; brothers, Tom (Yolanda) Rathman of Grand Island and Jim (Becky) Rathman of Aurora; brother-in-law, Eldon (Peg) Kroeger of Doniphan; nieces and nephews; and many friends and coffee drinkers.
Don was preceded in death by his younger brother, Mike Rathman, who was killed in a motorcycle accident on June 2, 1970; his parents, Walter and Norma Rathman; and his father-in-law and mother-in-law, Lawrence and Grace Kroeger.