Published On: Wed, Oct 15th, 2014

Obituary – Eugene Michael “Gene” Haberer

Habarer, Gene  paper pic


HARTINGTON — Eugene Michael “Gene” Haberer, 58, Hartington, died Oct. 9, 2014, at his residence after a brief battle with cancer.

Visitation and a Vigil Service were Sunday at Holy Trinity Catholic Church, Hartington, and continued one hour prior to services Monday at the church.

Mass of Christian Burial was Oct. 13 at the Holy Trinity Catholic Church, Hartington, with Rev. Jeffery Loseke officiating. Burial was in the Sacred Heart Cemetery, Wynot.

Pallbearers were Jimmy Anderson, Paul Cisney, Jeff Griess, Brian Kinney, Rick Kuehn, and Jason Morten.

Honorary pallbearers were all the baseball players Gene coached, played with and played against.

The Wintz Funeral Home, Hartington, was in charge of arrangements.

Gene was born March 10, 1956, in Whittier, Calif., to Henry and Kathleen (Koenig) Haberer. His family moved back to Nebraska in 1958 where they lived east of Hartington. Gene attended Spring Valley School, Wynot Elementary and Hartington Public High School, graduating in 1974. He also attended Brunswick Pinsetting School, Muskegon, Wis., in 1976.

Gene married Karen D. Nelson Sept. 18, 1982, in Hartington. They worked and resided in South Sioux City, and Sioux City, Iowa, until moving their family to Hartington in 1987. Gene worked at, and then leased Broadway Lanes until 1994. He purchased the bowling alley and operated it through the 2013/14 season. Gene was also employed by the City of Hartington. He coached girls’ softball in 1988. He ran and coached the Little League and Pony League baseball program from 1989-1997. He also coached the American Legion baseball teams from 1989-2001. Gene took great pride as the groundskeeper for Felber Field and being caretaker of the Hartington parks and sports complex from 1988-2014.

One of Gene’s great passions was coaching. He possessed a gift in bringing out the best in whomever he coached, in sports and in life. His philosophy was “work hard and have fun.” Gene was a lifelong bowler; achieving second place in Men’s State Bowling in 1996 and a perfect game in 2001. Gene also enjoyed sharing his music with all who would listen with him.

Gene is survived by his wife of 32 years, Karen; daughter, Aisley Ferguson, and friend, Courtney Colgan, Yankton, S.D.; son, Calen, and wife, Nicole Haberer, and their sons, Grady and Maddox Haberer; loyal companion dog, Sport; three sisters and husbands, Linda and Chuck Kathol, Bonnie and Joseph Emanuel, Carol and Dave McGregor, all of Hartington; and brother and wife, Gary Haberer and Peggy D’Orio; and many nieces and nephews.

Gene was preceded in death by his father and mother, Henry and Kathleen Haberer; and sister, Janice Haberer.