Martin Gene Stava was born on September 2, 1925, at Rushville, Nebraska, to Martin and Beatrice Michaelson Stava. He was baptized as an infant and confirmed as a youth at the Presbyterian Church at Rushville. He was also confirmed at St. Paul Evangelical Lutheran Church, Missouri Synod, in Rushville.
Gene attended grade school in District 14 and graduated from Rushville High School in 1942. He entered the United States Army November 16, 1945, and served eight months in Japan. He was discharged February 5, 1947. Gene was very proud of his military service and was a true patriot.
Gene was married to Mildred Schaer on June 17, 1951. They were engaged in farming and ranching eight miles northwest of Rushville on the home place which was homesteaded by his grandfather. This is where they raised their three children, Diane, Barbara, and Frank.
Gene and Mildred both liked to travel and enjoyed many nice trips together.
Gene was a member of the VFW and the American Legion Post 161, where he served as Commander and also as County Commander. Gene was a member of National and Nebraska Stockgrowers and a member of St. Paul Evangelical Lutheran Church.
Gene loved the prairie and one of his pleasures was driving the pastures to check on his cattle and windmills.
He was preceded in death by his father in 1967, his mother in 1990, his brother Jack in 1991, and his sister Ardis in 2008.
He is survived by his wife Mildred; two daughters Diane (Steve) and Barbara; son Frank; brother-in-law Olin Webb; grandchildren Thea, Kirk, Aric, and Katy; and great-grandchildren Rylee, Emma, Autumn, Eli, Jack, Will, and Hayden; and many nieces and nephews.
Visitation was held on Sunday, January 22, 2012, at 5-7 PM at St. Paul Evangelical Lutheran Church, Rushville, Nebraska. Services were held at St. Paul Evangelical Lutheran Church, Rushville, Nebraska, on Monday, January 23, 2012, at 1 PM.
Burial was at the Fairview Cemetery, Rushville, Nebraska, with full military rites, honors, and honor guards.
Chamberlain Pier Funeral Home of Gordon is in charge of arrangments.