LEXINGTON - Galen Frances Morris, 73, of Lexington died on Wednesday, Feb. 17, 2021, at Lexington Regional Health Center.
Funeral services will be 10:30 a.m. Wednesday at Reynolds-Love Funeral Home in Lexington with the Rev. Nathan Rhea, officiating. The service will be live-streamed via the Reynolds-Love Funeral Home Facebook page.
Visitation will be 5-7 p.m. Tuesday at Reynolds-Love Funeral Home in Lexington.
Interment with full military honors will be in Greenwood Cemetery at Lexington.
Galen was born Sunday, July 6, 1947, at 2:45 a.m. in Pawnee City to Woodrow Wilson Morris and Sadie Marie (Rowe) Morris, as the 6th of 7 sons. The family was noted in the Omaha World-Herald's ""Believe it or not"" column after his younger brother was born because each son was born on a different day of the week.
The family moved to Lexington on May 13, 1951. Galen attended Morton Elementary, and Lexington Jr. & Sr. High Schools, graduating in 1966. At least one of his school years, he was honored with Perfect Attendance. He excelled in athletics, being a starter for the football team as both offensive and defensive end. Galen was also a starter on Lexington's State ranked basketball team, which won the Holiday Tournament in 1965-66, and were SWC Champs in 1965. Galen also played city league basketball and was on the championship city league fast-pitch softball team. Galen was on the ""Cameo teams that played against the Husker champion football team in basketball and against the Harlem Travelers Team. Galen began working as a young boy at Hodges Neighborhood Market, stocking shelves and making deliveries. He mowed lawns, cleared snow, detasseled corn, hoed beans, and worked at a turkey farm. During his high school years, he worked at Platte Valley Packing, and for National Construction putting in curb and gutter. He began his career with the United States Postal Service in 1970, eight of his years as Post Master in Bertrand. He was instrumental in establishing the 911 address system for rural patrons in Dawson County. In 2001, he received the State of Nebraska Benjamin Franklin Community Newspaper and Postal Partnership Award. In February, 2009, Galen was honored for 40 years of Government Service. He took no sick leave during that time until he suffered three strokes that ended his career.
On Dec. 30, 1966, Galen married his high school sweetheart, Joan Millikan. Their union was blessed with one son, Lanny Dean Morris. That same year Galen was inducted in to the U.S. Army, serving his Country for two years active duty, and as a reservist for four years. His training was at Fort Bliss, near El Paso, Texas. He declined Officer Candidate training, not wanting to be career military, but did become an instructor. In Oct., 1967, his orders sent him to Vietnam with the 1st Infantry Division, Ready & Reactionary Force, engaging in the TET Offensive. On R&R he celebrated his 21st birthday in Hawaii with his wife, before returning to Vietnam. He was honorably discharged, receiving the Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal with 4 Bronze stars, and the Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal.
Galen was honored to be chosen for the first Dawson County Hero Flight to Washington, DC in 2016. He was also given a Quilt of Valor that same year at this 50th class reunion. He cherished the responsibility of putting flags at military graves in Greenwood Cemetery, and the solemn duty of flag folding and presentation to families of veteran's at their grave site.
Galen also served his church as a Deacon, Teacher, Youth Leader, Camp Counselor, Greeter, and Usher. He was a Gideon Member, A Lion's Club member, serving in many offices including president. He was a member of the Lexington Board of Education for 10 years. He had been a member of the VFW, was Pershing PTA president, Campus Life Advisor, on the Boy Scout committee, Community Education committee, youth league athletic coach. Galen suggested the sites for the current Library and the Grand Generation Center. He was the recipient of the 1970 Lexington Sertoma Club's Service to Mankind Award.
Survivors include his wife of 54 years, Joan, of Lexington; son, Lanny and wife Ladina Morris; grandsons, Caleb and Jonah Morris, all of Grand Island; step-granddaughter, Miranda and her two daughters of Hastings; brothers, Leo Morris of Murdock, Kansas, and Terry Morris of Elwood; eight nephews; five nieces; and several sisters-in-law.
Galen was preceded in death by his parents, W. Wilson and Sadie Morris; brothers, Oliver (Sonny), Elden, Rex, and Morris Lee Morris; and a nephew, Elden Morris, Jr.
Galen was a blessing, a faithful worker, wrapped in God's love and care, and encouraged by many. He enjoyed the beauty of creation, hunting, fishing, travel and coffee time with friends. He was delivered and now has been returned to his sender!
Memorials are kindly suggested to the 13th & Tyler Church of Christ in Lexington or Donor's Choice.
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Published by Kearney Hub on Feb. 20, 2021.