Thursday, August 5, 2021

Garold "Gary Gene" Galey, Jr. (1961-2021)

Gary Gene Galey Jr., age 60, of Crawford, Nebraska, passed away peacefully surrounded by family on Friday, July 30, 2021, at Regional West Medical Center in Scottsbluff, Nebraska. His Memorial service will be held at 10 am on Saturday, August 14, 2021 at Christ Community Church in Crawford, Nebraska with Pastor Steve Mallery officiating. Inurnment will follow at the Crawford City Cemetery. A memorial has been established to the Friends of Pets in Chadron, Nebraska. Online condolences may be left at

Gary was born to Gary Sr. and Zoleta Galey on February 11, 1961. He graduated high school from Crawford High School in 1979. Immediately after graduating, he began his long career at BNSF Railroad until he retired in 2016. He raised exotic birds and animals throughout his life, which was his true passion. He had two children, Dezarae Brandt and Chance Galey. Gary enjoyed traveling to watch his son, Chance, play sports. He enjoyed nearly daily phone calls with his daughter, Dezarae. He was extremely proud his children graduated college and would often say he thought he did “okay” with raising his children. Gary enjoyed being outdoors, woodworking, spending time with his animals, riding ATVs, and planning his next get rich adventure. He kept a small circle of close family and a few friends. Gary was admired for his ability to be honest and stay true to his colors, despite the adversities that would come his way. His favorite quote was “Well that didn’t go according to plan. Hang on this could get a little western!”

The past few years were not always easy for Gary. He was grateful for his family, friends, and neighbors that were willing to lend a hand. The Galey family would like to extend a special thanks his neighbors, Tim and Connie Bosak, Aaron Young, and his dear friend, Dale Ray Rising.

Gary is survived by his father, Gary Sr., who was always there for him; his two children, Dezarae (Jason) Brandt and Chance (Jenna) Galey; five grandchildren, Ava, Jaxson, and Charlie Brandt and Ayden and Kellyn Galey; his brother, Jay (Meloni) Galey; nephew, TJ Galey and nieces Jaycy and Kelsey Galey; uncles and aunts, Bob and Naomi Galey, Larry and Karen Miller, Margaret Galey, and Kay Galey; and many cousins.

Gary was preceded in death by his mother Zoleta Galey and grandparents Doris and Tom Hamaker

Thursday, January 2, 2020

Zoleta (Hamaker) Galey (1943-2019)

A celebration of life for 76-year old Zoleta Galey of Crawford, Nebraska, was held Saturday, Dec 28, 2019 at Christ Community Church in Crawford, followed by a luncheon at the Eagles Club.  While the winter storm that hit the region prevented several people from making it to Crawford, the church was nearly filled by those paying their respects to this remarkable lady. 

Zoleta Pearl (Hamaker) Galey was born to Tom and Doris Hamaker October 20, 1943 in Crawford.  She passed away December 20, 2019 at Regional West Medical Center in Scottsbluff surrounded by her family.

Zoleta married Gary Galey, July 29, 1960 in Scottsbluff.  They had two sons, Gary Gene of Crawford and Jay of Riverton, Wyoming.

She loved life and made it fun for everyone around her.  Zoleta had so many wonderful stories to share and was always able to make everyone laugh, even in her final weeks of life in the hospital at Scottsbluff. The nurses and staff loved her.  She touched so many with her wit and kind heart.

Zoleta and Gary had a revolving door at their home – and the coffee pot always on!  They enjoyed having so many family and friends in their home.

She thrived having her family around her.  She and Gary took their grandchildren on many trips in the summer, making life-long memories for all of them.  And she loved Christmas!  All the kids and grandkids would arrive at their home on Christmas Eve and spend the night.  Christmas day was a joyous time of presents, laughter, good food and much love.

Zoleta is survived by her loving husband Gary, who was always by her side;  their two sons, Gary Gene of Crawford and Jay (Meloni) of Riverton, Wyoming; brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law Bob and Naomi Galey of Whitney; Larry and Karen Miller of Spearfish, South Dakota; Margaret Galey of Lansing, Michigan; and Kay Galey of Chadron;  four grandchildren,  Dezarae Brandt (Jason) of Gering and Chance (Jenna) of Broomfield, Colorado;  Jaycy Galey of Omaha, and Thomas James of Casper; two nephews, Damon Bass (Tawyna) of Alliance, and Brooke Bass (Jody) of Crawford;  three grand nephews, Brayden and Keagan Bass of Alliance and Travon Bass of Crawford.  Also surviving are eight great-grandchildren, many nieces and nephews, and numerous cousins.

Zoleta was preceded in death by her parents and sister, Reba, whom she missed dearly.  Also, brother-in-law Tom Galey and wife Dorothy Galey and brother-in-law Bud Galey along with many aunts and uncles.

Funeral and burial arrangements were under the care of Chamberlain Funeral Home.  Zoleta Galey is at rest in the Crawford City Cemetery. May she rest in peace.

Sunday, June 10, 2018

Bob Galey returns to the Railroad....for a day of memories!

The fellow in the red ball cap on this "Iron Horse" diesel is the son of the cowboy atop a horse at the very top of this website.

Standing on the front of the old diesel with other C&NW railroad veterans, 82-year-old Bob Galey is still farming east of Whitney on the same place his parents, Tom and Eva Galey, leased and farmed until Tom died in 1958.  That's Tom Galey, Sr. on the horse.  And while Bob's three brothers – Tom, Bud, and Gary – pursued careers elsewhere, Bob remained on the farm, eventually marrying Naomi Sibert of Crawford and buying the farm.  And that's where they raised their daughters, Brenda and Linda.  

Bob's older brother, Tom, made a career as a Navy SeaBee and retired with his family to Lubbock, Texas, where he died in 2006.  A younger brother, Bud, was a true cowboy and worked in the Nebraska Sandhills, providing for his family as a ranch foreman until his death in 1996.  Another younger brother, Gary, served a stint in the Navy before settling in Crawford, Nebraska, where he raised his family while working and then retiring from Kansas-Nebraska Natural Gas Company and operating a grocery store for several years.  Younger sister, Margaret Galey, who worked many years at Chadron State College, is retired and lives in Lansing, Michigan.  Younger sister, Karen Miller,  retired after working as a Medical School secretary in Pennsylvania and now lives in Spearfish, South Dakota.  You'll find other bits and pieces of information about the family elsewhere on this website.

Despite maintaining and expanding the farm, Bob Galey also had others jobs over the years.  Perhaps the most important one was working for the Chicago & Northwestern Railway in Chadron.  Working as a Machinist's Helper beginning in 1969, he toiled in the old roundhouse the better share of 20 years until  his retirement from C&NW in 1989.

When the Chicago & Northwestern Historical Society decided to hold their annual meeting in Rapid City, they elected to spend one day in Chadron, visiting the old roundhouse and the Dawes County Museum.  About a dozen or so "old-timers" were recruited to host the conference attendees, answering questions they might have about the place they all worked many years ago.

Other railroaders in the roundhouse photograph above (left-to-right) are:  Tom Pfister, Bing Decker, Neal Soester, Bob Galey, Vince Hill, and Jay Loghry.

While at the museum, Bob also re-visited the Galey Family tile  (shown at left) commemorating their support of the Dawes County Museum when it was under construction.  "Selling" tiles to be exhibited on the museum floor – and some on the walls – was one of many fundraising initiatives shortly after the museum moved to its present location south of Chadron.  Click on the photo to take a closer look.

Monday, October 31, 2016

Family and friends say good-bye to Kenny Kritenbrink

A Cunningham family cousin, Kenny Kritenbrink, of Chadron, Nebraska, was laid to rest today (Monday, October 31, 2016) at the Black Hills National Cemetery near Sturgis, South Dakota.

Kenny passed away at the Veteran's Center at Fort Meade, South Dakota on October 16 at the age of 82.  Although he had been in failing health for some time, it was only in the last few weeks that his mobility was impaired to the point that he was unable to get out and have coffee with friends and family.  He had joined many Cunningham and Galey family relatives just last summer at Wilson Park in Chadron for a Galey family reunion.

There was a huge turnout for Kenny's service at Chamberlain Chapel in Chadron on Saturday, October 29 -- with standing room only.

Kenneth Kepple Kritenbrink was born August 4, 1934 at Whitney, Nebraska to Abram (Abe) and Geraldine (Cunningham) Kritenbrink. His maternal grandparents were Rayburn and Margaret Cunningham.  Railroading was in Kenny's blood.  His father was a railroader.  His grandfather was a railroader.  And his leaf didn't fall far from their tracks.  He was a railroader with the Chicago and North Western Railway System for some 42 years.

Read Kenny Kritenbrink's obituary.  For a few family photographs, visit our Galey Gallery.  

During the inurnment ceremony at the Fort Meade National Cemetery this morning, it seemed almost a bit of divine intervention that the haunted strains of a train whistle could be heard from the railroad tracks behind the cemetery.

All Aboard for Kenny's final destination:  The Pearly Gates.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Galey family gathers in Chadron, Nebraska for reunion

Although a smaller turnout than hoped for, Galey family members from California, Arizona, Wyoming, South Dakota, and Nebraska attended a family reunion at Wilson Park in Chadron, Nebraska last week (June 18-19, 2016). We definitely missed our "Texas contingent," which -- like all things Texan -- would likely have been the largest group! All the Galey "cousins" here are descended from Elisha & Eliza Galey, with a smattering of Cunningham cousins descended from Rayburn & Margaret Cunningham. To learn who all these folks are -- and enjoy a few other snapshots -- visit our Galey Reunion - 2016 photo gallery.

Thursday, January 7, 2016

They're all Galeys!
Join us for a gathering of Galey cousins this summer in Nebraska!
We're in the thick of planning for a Galey Family Reunion this summer in Chadron, Nebraska.  The dates are Saturday & Sunday, June 18-19, 2016, and we hope you'll join us for the fun, food, and festivities of a good old-fashioned family reunion!

Most importantly at this point:  Let us know you're planning to come.  Please RSVP by May 15, 2016 to Karen (Galey) Miller at 605-484-7808.

From Washington and California to Texas and Indiana and other points "back east," there are Galey family members all across the country.  For many years, of course, our Galey clan lived in Missouri, Nebraska, and Montana, so we're going "back home" -- sort of in the middle of all this geography -- and we hope you'll make plans to join us.

We'll gather in Wilson Park in Chadron for a hearty lunch, which will be catered by the Country Kitchen resaturant.  It's $13 per person, which includes lunch, dessert, and drinks.

The real fun, of course, will be catching up with Galey cousins from..... well..... everywhere!

Have photos or other Galey family momorabilia?  Bring it along and share with your Galey family!

Watch this site for more information about the Galey Family Reunion!


Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Early Cunningham family photo found in California collection

Thanks to Peggy Mosher Sciarillo of Huntington Beach, California, for sharing this wonderful old photo of the Alfred V. Cunningham family, taken in about 1889 -- probably in front of their home in Trumbull or Giltner, Nebraska.  

Parents Alfred and Mary Jane Cunningham are seated.  The oldest boy (standing at left) is Rayburn.  Clarence is on his father's lap, while Lawson is on his mother's lap.  The note on the back of the picture states that Rayburn and Clarence were born in Onargo, Illinois, while Lawson was born in Trumbull, Nebraska.  

Both Giltner and Trumbull are in Hamilton County, just a few miles southeast of Hastings, Nebraska.  For a closer look at this and other Galey and Cunningham family photos, visit our Photo Gallery.