Jack Ernst was born on May 10, 1926 in Holton, Kansas, the son of George and Hallie Fairbanks Ernst and died on November 18, 1984 in Lincoln, Nebraska after a long illness. As a young man he attended public schools at Soldier and Topeka, KS, interrupting his high school education to serve in the U.S. Navy during World War II in the western Pacific Theatre of Operations. Following his discharge in 1946, he completed high school and college training, receiving Bachelor and Master of Education degrees from the University of Kansas at Lawrence. He was baptized as an adult at St. John's Lutheran Church, Beatrice and since 1960 has been an active member of this congregation. Jack was married in 1952 to Phyllis Grittman of Topeka, Kansas and to this marriage four children were born, two daughters, Kathi and Kristi and two sons, David and Daniel.
Jack was a gifted teacher and educator, teaching first in Kansas and in California, before coming to Nebraska, where he taught in Beatrice, then served as principal of Huntington, Medowlane and Prescott Elementary Schools. He also served as coordinator of elementary education for the Lincoln Public Schools. The last seven years he has taught at Dawes Junior High School. Jack was a member of several service organizations related to education, including a life-time membership in the National Education Association.
Jack was preceded in death by his father, his daughter Kristi, and his sister Marian. He is survived by his wife, Phyllis; his daughter, Kathi Krause and her husband, Scott, by his sons David of Omaha and Daniel at home; by his mother, Mrs. Hallie Ernst and his brother Louis, both of Onaga, Kansas; by two grandchildren, Jessie and Jordin, by other relatives and a host of friends and former students for whom he remained an example and an inspiration.
Phyllis Lee Grittman Ernst
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