Obituary Details

Jurgen "Jerd" Detlef Lorenzen

(09/17/1875 - 04/09/1954)
Courtesy of The Lusk Herald, 04/15/1954

Jerd Lorenzen, Long Time Resident Dies Here Friday; Services Held Sunday

Note: The article below is printed as published. The name "Jurgen" has been used here based on information in family obituaries and on the gravestone.

J. D. "Jerd" Lorenzen, a colorful and beloved figure of Lusk for more than half a century, died at the Spencer Hospital Apr. 9 at the age of 79 after being in failing health for several years.

Judgen Detlef Lorenzen was born in Rendsburg, Holstein, Germany Sept. 17, 1875, the son of Margaretha Wieckhorst and Peter Jurgen Lorenzen. He came to the United States at the age of 14 with an older brother, Peter. He settled at Papillion, Nebr., where he remained until he was 23 years of age, when he came to Lusk where another brother, George had preceded him. George died here in 1916.

On Nov. 16, 1904 "Jerd" was married to Miss Beulah Martin at Harrison, Nebr. This year would have been their golden wedding anniversary.

When he first came to Lusk Mr. Lorenzen worked for a time on numerous cattle ranches in this vicinity, then later owned and operated the City Dray Line in Lusk. There are many grown people in Lusk today who can remember when they were children attending the Lusk Grade School, that when a blizzard came up suddenly, how "Jerd" with his team of sturdy horses would make their way through drifts to the school house and safely deliver the children to their various homes.

On July 15, 1914 Mr. Lorenzen received his Certificate of Naturalization and thus became a citizen of the land of his adoption.

He helped organize the first Continental Bulk Plant in Lusk and became its agent which position he held for several years and then resigned. Later he helped organize the Texas Oil Company bulk plant, which he operated in conjunction with his dray line.

During the time that Mr. Lorenzen operated his dray line were the days of a vast amount of freight being shipped into Lusk on the railroad, especially towards fall when the ranchers began hauling their winter supplies of food and grain. The unloading of these boxcars was hard, heavy work but Mr. Lorenzen's strength, coupled with his abounding energy and good humor made him a great favorite with the various Lusk merchants when he delivered their goods which had been shipped in.

After selling his dray business he was employed as marshal and general supervisor of the town of Lusk for approximately 25 years until his failing health forced him to retire in 1941.

He was a member of Custer Lodge No. 21, I.O.O.F. for 44 years and was noble grand in 1914. He enjoyed his lodge work and was a faithful member. He was confirmed in the German Lutheran Church in 1890 and had been baptized as a child in Germany.

Survivors include his wife, Beulah, two sons, Harry Franklin of Lusk and George Dale of LaGrande, Ore., and one daughter, Mrs. Florence Miles of Lusk. A son, Charles Jurden preceded him in death July 12, 1935. Two sisters also survive. Mrs. Mary Hardegen of Council Bluffs, Ia., who is critically ill at this time and Mrs. Wilheminne Thun of Rendsburg, Germany. There are also nine grandchildren. Lala Miles of Lusk, Terry, Jay Dee and Janice Lorenzen of LaGrande, Ore., Larry Lorenzen of Lusk and Dennis, Monty, Deleta and Arleta Lorenzen of Madera, Calif.

Funeral services were conducted from the Peet Mortuary, Sunday afternoon, April 11, at 2:30 o'clock with Rev. Jacob Nein officiating. The songs "In The Garden" and "Rock of Ages" were sung by a quartet composed of Mrs. Emerson Bonner, Mrs. A. F. DeCastro, Dan Christian, and Rex Yocum with Audrey Bostrom as the organ accompanist.

The Odd Fellows funeral ceremony closed the service and was conducted by Noble Grand George Dixon and Chaplain, Johnnie Thon.

The casket bearers were George Gibson, R. I. Olinger, M. S. Jordan, C. E. Marvin, Oscar Bostrom and Fred Hansen.

Interment was made in the Lusk Cemetery.

Among those from out of town here for the services were Mr. and Mrs. George Lorenzen, and three children of LaGrande, Ore., and Mr. and Mrs. J. D. Bowen of Denver.

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Gravestone photo courtesy of Joshua Brackett's Eagle Scout Project
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