She attended country school and graduated from DeWitt High. After attending the University of Nebraska, she received her Bachelor of Arts Degree from Augustana College, Rock Island, IL with post graduate hours from UNL and UNK.
On April 12, 1953 she was united in marriage to Robert L. Wolfe by Pastor Erwin Jensen at Trinity. This union was blessed with two daughters and one son Cheryl, Kathryn, and Robert Jr.
After living in Omaha and Abilene, Kansas they moved to York in 1963, and here is where she taught school for twenty years. Previous to this she taught two years in Beatrice and one year in Davenport, Iowa.
While teaching fourth grade in York, she was a member of the Nebraska State Council of International Reading Association; Presenter at the 1974 Helpmobile; past Vice-President of the Nebraska State Council for Social Studies; York County Historical Association; recipient of the first Golden Apple Award, an award recognizing the York School District; Golden Apple Award from KGIN/KOLN of Lincoln; awarded the Cooper Foundation Award, a unit titled “Native Nebraska” ‘ and presenter at the Planning, Presenting, and Evaluation for Upper and Intermediate Classes at Concordia Teacher College.
Verna was selected as the Yorkfest Queen for the 2000-2001 year. She loved her students and was present to many of their high school graduations as well as many of their weddings.
Upon her retirement Verna became Executive Director of the York Community Foundation for 5 years. She kept herself busy doing various volunteer jobs at Emmanuel Lutheran, Stephen Ministry, Board member of the Kilgore Library, mentor for Teammates, York Adopt-A-Pet, York Chamber of Commerce, and York County Visitor’s Bureau. She enjoyed her time with PEO Chapter HH, Book Club, Garden Club, and Bridge groups. She loved to garden, sew, making quilts for all her nine grandchildren, and entertaining for holidays. Her greatest joy was her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren and many friends.
After 92 years of God’s blessings, God took her soul to Himself on September 27, 2020.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Robert, her parents, one sister Eunice Peterson; one sister-in-law Orlethia Abbott, and four brothers-in-law George Flebbe, Lowell Schuerman, Rex Peterson, and Chuck Leffler.
Surviving and morning her loss while rejoicing in her gain are three children: Cheryl (Rich) Tonniges of Kearney, NE, Kathryn (Kevin) Sevcik of Northfield, MN, and Robert Wolfe Jr. of Arkansas City, KS. Her grandchildren include: Drew (Krista) Tonniges, Kyle (Brenda) Tonniges, Ashley (David) Winkelbauer, Sarah (Abhishek) Tummala, Michael (Blair) Sevcik, Lauren (Kevin) Klee, Emily (Zak) Sagstetter, and Alex Wolfe and MacKenzie Wolfe, along with 12 great-grandchildren. She is also survived by two sisters LaVera Flebbe of Lee Summit, MO, and Hermine Leffler of Lincoln, NE, along with many nieces and nephews.
Verna will be greatly missed not only by her family, but by the many people whose lives she touched through the organizations she belonged to, her classroom, and her church.
Funeral services are scheduled for 10:00 a.m., Thursday, October 1, 2020 at Emmanuel Lutheran Church, York. Interment will follow at Greenwood Cemetery, York. Visitation will be held from 1-8pm on Wednesday at the mortuary. Verna’s service will be broadcast on the church’s website at www.emmanuelyorkne.com. COVID 19 funeral guidelines will be implemented with limited spaced seating and masks strongly encouraged. Memorials may be directed to Emmanuel Lutheran Church, Wessel’s Living History Farm, York Community Foundation, or York Public Schools Foundation.