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David Bridges – Metz Mortuary

    David “Dave” L. Bridges
    David “Dave” Lee Bridges, age 81, of Henderson, NE, died Friday, June 25, 2021 in Lincoln, NE. He was born April 12, 1940, at the family home near Taylor, NE to Harold and Verla (Roberts) Bridges. Dave’s older brother, Jim, and younger sisters, Patti and Marlene completed the family circle. On September 1, 1968, Dave was united in marriage to Janet Scharvin in Oxford, NE., and they are blessed with two sons, Matt and Josh.
    Dave started formal education at the age of 4 because his teacher didn’t want to send him home every day after he followed Jim to their neighboring country school; his father and mother conceded. He attended country grade schools in Custer County and high school at Oxford, NE., but outdoors was where he thrived and where he began a lifelong love and respect for all of God’s creations. During his service in the U.S. Air Force, Dave served in the air traffic unit and earned his position as the catcher on the baseball team. Thereafter, Dave received his teaching degree in biology/geography from Kearney State College and his master’s degree from the University of Nebraska at Omaha in geography/geology.
    At Bruning Public Schools and at High Plains Community School in Polk and Hordville, NE., Dave taught biology, geography and agriculture sciences, was the FFA advisor, and yes, he loved coaching boys and girls in football, basketball, track, and softball with his many coaching buddies. He coached and mentored his own sons, tried not to favor them too much, and saw them succeed then, and now, beyond his best hopes. Beloved grandchildren and his great-grandson became new versions of their parents for Dave to embrace and cherish.
    Who wouldn’t guess that Dave’s hobbies included anything outdoors, and that his sons now share those passions? Having a few sheep at their acreage near Bruning started as a hobby, but the result was a nationally recognized flock of beautiful purebred Suffolk sheep that the family showed and sold across the Midwest. A faithful Labrador dog named Levi, Mandy, Vegas, or mutts named Johnson Wadsworth or Harv-the WonderDog, Killer of Highway 4, and now Jax, were among the many pets so important to a lover of all animals. Retirement in 2003 allowed much more time with family and many sporting events, work and leisurely days at his “Sweetwater Ranch” in Jefferson County, freedom to hunt and fish any time, to golf, to read, garden, nurture old and new friendships, and offer his daily prayers. Dave created marvelous wood carvings, bronze sculptures, wrote some awesome poetry, and loved being at home, or anywhere, with his soulmate, Jani.
    He was active in many teaching, coaching, agricultural, livestock, environmental, and golf organizations.
    Dave is survived by his wife Janet of Henderson, sons Matt (Kristie) Bridges of Lincoln, and Josh (Mindi) Bridges of Gretna. His grandchildren include Austin and Haylee Bridges, and Caeden and Averi Bridges, and his great-grandson Beckham. He is also survived by sister-in-law Pat Bridges of Broken Bow, NE, and sisters Patti Rodd of Fountain, CO, and Marlene (Danny) Harris of San Angelo, TX; his wife’s sisters Nancy Cockle of Waverly, Linda (Doug) Frank, and Kathy Scharvin, both of McCook, NE; together with numerous uncles, aunts, nephews, nieces, cousins, and great friends.
    Preceding Dave in death were his parents, brother Jim Bridges, brothers-in-law Bob Rodd and Ronnie Scharvin, and his parents-in-law Frank and Dorothy Scharvin.
    In addition to Dave’s grandchildren, honorary pall bearers include the many students and athletes he taught and coached as they always lifted his spirit in ways that are incomprehensible.
    Memorial services are scheduled for 10:00 a.m., Wednesday, July 7, 2021 at the Bethesda Mennonite Church in Henderson with the Reverends Seth Miller and Chelsea Vaught officiating. Casual attire or school tee shirts are welcome. Private family inurnment, with military honors, will take place at the Central City Cemetery. There will be no viewing; however, his family will greet friends between 6:00 – 8:00 p.m., Tuesday, July 6, 2021 at Metz Mortuary in Henderson. Dave’s memorial service will be webcast live on the church’s website at In lieu of flowers and plants, memorials may be directed to the High Plains Community Schools FFA Chapter at Polk, NE., or to the Nebraska Wildlife Conservation Fund.


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