A Life Story of wife, mother and grandmother ended on August 8, 2019. Eldine Marilyn Hays, age 87 of Lincoln, passed away and is now at peace. Eldine's life's journey began on December 29, 1931, at the Beatrice Hospital. She was raised by her parents Ernest and Ella (Mahloch) Spilker of Pickrell, Nebraska, on their hog farm. Eldine spent her high school years living with an aunt because back then travel to and from Pickrell to Beatrice was more of a challenge. She graduated from Beatrice High School in 1949. Eldine ventured to Lincoln for a short time and worked at the Lincoln Journal Star and then returned to her hometown to work at the Pickrell State Bank. She married Richard A. Hays on March 2, 1954, at St. Paul's Lutheran Church, rural DeWitt after meeting on a blind date and falling in love. They lived for a brief time in Galveston, Texas while Richard was in the U.S. Coast Guard. Moving back to rural Odell where together operated a dairy farm. Eldine and Richard had 4 Children: Steve, Susan, Nancy and Jane the pride and joy of her life as well as her nine grandchildren. She was a woman of faith, creative, artistic, strong-willed, caring, knowledgeable, continuous learner, giving and hard working.
Eldine loved being a dairy farmer's wife. Her knack for creativity came through with the naming of the Guernsey cows and calves. Attending dairy shows that the family participated in was enjoyed by her. Eldine made many cherished connections and memories with the people she met at those shows.
She appreciated nature and being outdoors. One of the things Eldine loved the most was her flower garden on the farm. She took great pride in tending it and seeing the beauty of each flower. Eldine missed the farm after moving to Beatrice, a countrywoman at heart. She was a connector, keeping in touch with numerous relatives, friends, and neighbors. Active in the community as leader for the Odell Cookies 4-H Club for many years. Volunteered as an assistant to the judges at the Gage County Fair. A member of the Neighborly Neighbors Extension Club of Odell. Eldine loved volunteering to teach chair exercise at the Kensington in Beatrice.
She was a woman of strong faith. Eldine enjoyed reciting bible verses and singing hymns. A member of the Wymore Methodist Church. She was active within the church and taught bible school. Many years later Eldine became a member of St. John Lutheran Church in Beatrice. She was active in Rachel's Circle and volunteered at the church Food Bank.
After losing her sight and some of her hearing in 2004, Eldine became very interested in playing checkers on a board, especially for visually impaired. She listened to over 500 books and numerous magazines from the Nebraska Library Commission's talking books. Eldine enjoyed having the Odell Village Voice, Beatrice Daily Sun, and church bulletin read to her by her special angel Jane Richardson. It was her way of keeping connected to those communities and to her church. She loved exercising and was always determined to fit walking in during her days. Very seldom missed out on group chair exercise time. A lover of Trivia and word games—Eldine would amaze others with her diverse range of knowledge and memory.
Various interests in her life included art, crafts, sewing, cooking & baking, antiquing, thrift store shopping, tennis, and playing the piano. She enjoyed following Husker football, basketball, and volleyball when she could tune it in on her radio. Trips to Hawaii and London were her most memorable. A few skiing trips with friends were something she cherished as did Richard. Eldine also enjoyed going to theatrical & musical productions. Loved sing along' s especially of show tunes and hymns. Attending various events of the grandchildren when they were younger was also a love of hers.
Survivors include her children Steve Hays of Omaha and special friend Cherie, Susan Riekenberg and husband Dennis of Omaha, Nancy Bauer and husband Henry (Hank) of Plattsmouth, and Jane Weddle and husband William (Bill) of Lincoln, grandchildren Lauren Hays, Emily Hays and husband Adam Smith, Leslie, Anna and Cody, Grant Riekenberg, and Rachel and Vince, Joshua, and Aaron Bauer; brother-in-law, James Hays and wife Betty of Diller; brother-in-law, the Rev. Don Sperber and wife Linda of Lakewood, Colorado, and nieces, nephews, and cousins.
She was preceded in death by Richard Hays, Ernest and Ella Spilker, James and Hazel Hays, Verneal Spilker Grigsby, Jason Grigsby, Audrey Sperber, Karla Hays, and Colin Hays.
She had many angels helping her through her journey: CountryHouse Staff on 25th & Old Cheney, AseraCare Hospice Staff, Nebraska Center for the Blind, Rhonda Laswell, Kate Blank, Pat Masek, and many others. The family would like to express a special and sincere thanks to all for their passion, dedication, and patience.
Memorial services will be held on Friday, August 23, 2019 at 10:30 a.m. at St. John Lutheran Church of Beatrice with Pastor Ernesto Medina officiating. A family prayer service will be held at 10:15 a.m. at the church on Friday. Cremation has taken place and there will be no viewing. A register book will be available at Fox Funeral Home of Beatrice from 10:00 a.m. until 8:00 p.m. on Thursday and one hour prior to the service at church on Friday. The family will greet friends and relatives from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Thursday at the funeral home. In lieu of flowers, a memorial has been established to the Colin Hays Legacy Foundation. Condolences may be left online at www.foxfuneralhome.net Fox Funeral Home of Beatrice is in charge of arrangements.