Columbus — Grace Gotschall Taylor, 99, of Columbus, died Saturday, Oct. 26, 2019 at Brookstone Acres in Columbus.
Visitation was held Friday, Nov. 1, 2019 at the United Methodist Church in Atkinson.
Funeral services were held Friday, Nov. 1, 2019 at the church. Pastor Brian Loy officiated. Music was provided by Dr. Robert Randall
Pallbearers were Mike Elsasser, Dave Elsasser, Tim Elasser, Curt Gotschall, Clark Gotschall and Matt Gotschall.
Honorary pallbearers were all of Grace's family and friends whose friendship meant so much to her.
Burial was in the Woodlawn Cemetery in Atkinson.
Memorials may be made to Atkinson United Methodist Church, St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital or the Smile Train.
Seger Funeral Home in Atkinson was in charge of the arrangements.
Grace was born on Oct. 27, 1919 to E.E. and Ethel (Carlson) Gotschall. She attended school in Knox County, graduating as valedictorian of her Niobrara High School class in 1936 at age 16.
When her family moved to Holt County that fall, she instead moved to Grand Island to attend Grand Island Business College. There she met and married Daniel Vern Taylor of Newcastle in 1939.
The couple moved to South Dakota where Vern worked for the Forestry Department and U.S. Army and Grace worked as a stenographer at the Air Force Base near Brookings.
In 1945, Grace lived in Atkinson for a year after the birth of their first child. When Vern was discharged from the Army, the couple moved to Lincoln where he attended the University of Nebraska - Lincoln on the GI Bill and the couple had their second child. In 1950 the family moved to Omaha but made frequent visits to Atkinson for holidays and summer vacations.
Grace was a devoted mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and aunt.
She started a Girl Scout troop at her daughters' school, made sure her children were involved in choir and youth programs at First Methodist Church of Omaha and sought out the best piano, organ and dance teachers for them. She used her seamstress skills for clothes making and home decor. As a grandmother, she helped finance lawn mowers for the boys' neighborhood businesses, attended swim meets, tennis mathces and band concerts and took each boy on a special trip when they reached their 16th birthdays.
After her children were grown, Grace worked as executive secretary at Omaha National Bank and later at Hughes Aircraft (Canoga Park, CA and Aurora, CO), where she held a security clearance to work on defense contracts. When she started work, the electric typewriter had barely been introduced. At age 80, she got her first home computer and e-mail account and then discovered the iPad.
She loved to play bridge, especially during reunions with her siblings at the Gotschall ranch, but she was equally adept at "Go Fish," Uno and Mexican Dominoes with her grand- and great-grandchildren.
After retirement, Grace discovered her talent at golf and joined the Nebraska Women's Amateur Golf Association. She was a world-wide traveler - Panama Canal, Tahiti and Bora Bora, New Zealand, Scandinavia - and also traveled to try out new golf courses in Georgia, Utah and Hawaii. She took advantage of her years in California to attend celebrity golf tournaments and followed the pros faithfully on tv in her later years. The was a season ticket holder to Huskers football games and an avid fan from 1945 on.
Through her school, work, recreation and church activities, she made many lifelong friends, but it was her love of family that continued to draw her back to the ranch country. One of her favorite sayings was, "You can take the girl out of the country, but you can't take the country out of the girl."
Grace is survived by one sister Frances (David J.) Leighton of Loveland, CO; two daughters Linda Trone and Karen (Bob) Elsasser of Columbus; three gransons Mike (WendyO, Dave (Holly) and Tim (Susie) Elsasser; two great-gransons Connor and Aidan Elsasser; two great-granddaughters Carly and Lauren Elsasser; two sisters-in-law Betty Gotschall of Atkinson and Jayne Gotschall of O'Neill; and many Gotschall and Taylor nephews, nieces and great- nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her parents E.E. and Ethel Gotschall; one great-uncle Ray Gotschall; four brothers Gale, Gerald, Dean and Ernest J. Gotschall; her husband Daniel Vern Taylor; and one baby daughter Virginia Grace Taylor.