On Tuesday morning, February 9, 2021, Joleen E Hicken, 78, of Kearney, moved to her Heavenly home. Joleen was a godly woman who loved the Lord and her family and set an example for her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren that will lead them all their lives. Funeral services were held 10:30 am Tuesday, February 16, 2021 at First Baptist Church in Kearney with Pastor Sean Dougherty officiating. The service will be live streamed through the church website at http://kearneyfb.org/watch. Interment will follow at Kearney Cemetery. Visitation will be one hour prior to the service at the church.
Memorials are suggested to First Baptist Church. Condolences may be shared online at www.osrfh.com. Services are entrusted to O’Brien Straatmann Redinger Funeral and Cremation Services of Kearney.
Joleen was born in Gothenburg, Nebraska on July 11, 1942 to the late Oscar and Dorothy Anderson. On December 11, 1960, she married Norman L. Hicken.
Joleen spent her younger years growing up on a ranch south of Brady, NE. She attended a small country school through 8th grade and then attended Gothenburg High School and graduated with the class of 1959. After graduation from high school, she worked at Myers Drug Store for a short time and then was employed at the Gothenburg State Bank for 13 years. During that time she married Norman Hicken in 1960 and they had two children, Jolinda and Chad.
She and her husband moved their family to Kearney where she was employed at the First National Bank for 6 years. She then entered the insurance and investment industry and owned and operated her own business for 32 years. Because of her hard work and dedication to helping people with their finances, she accumulated numerous clients and friends and also earned several industry awards for her achievements.
She and her family were members of First Baptist Church in Kearney at which she was involved in Sunday School, American Baptist Women’s Group, the Ruth Circle, and Bible Studies.
She was taught from a young age to be proud of her Swedish heritage and it was a joy for her to plan family reunions which she called “Family Fun Days” at which family came from near and far to enjoy the potluck picnics, cream can stew, Swedish dancers, wooden Dala horse painting and other fun and games. One of the high lights of her life was to have the opportunity to travel to Sweden to meet and get acquainted with many of the Anderson family that did not migrate to America.
In 2001, she helped her father complete his dream of writing and publishing two books about his adventures in life.
After selling her business in 2007, she started enjoying her retirement. She loved the slower pace, sleeping late and just enjoying her home, her family, her church and friends.
In 2011, she was asked to accept the position of chairperson for the Kearney Christian Women’s Connection and on several occasions was asked to be the featured speaker at several women’s special events around the state.
Joleen enjoyed creating memories for her family and found joy in having the family over for their birthdays, special occasions, and holiday events. Her family is now enjoying some of the many home videos that “Grams” always insisted making whenever the family got together. She always included her and Norman’s parents in the events also as long as they were able to attend.
Joleen loved her Savior, the Lord Jesus, with all her heart, and she loved God’s Word. Joleen was a powerful prayer warrior, and only heaven knows what a wonderful and eternal impact all her many years of faithful praying have had on her family, her friends, and the world at large. She was a member of First Baptist Church in Kearney.
Left to cherish her memory are her husband of 60 years, Norman Hicken of Kearney; daughter, Jolinda (Ron) Drake of Kearney; son, Chad (Trava) Hicken of Littleton, CO; grandchildren, Amy (John) Bettles of Kearney, Hillary (Brandon) Barney of Kansas City, MO, Caitlyn Drake of Hastings, Taylor Hicken of Littleton, CO and Jordan Hicken of Littleton, CO; great grandchildren, Kennedy Kegley, Addilyn, Colton and Macie Bettles, and Henry Barney; brothers, Roger (Dawn) Anderson of Staplehurst, NE and Milan Anderson of Gothenburg; as well as many nieces, nephews and extended family and friends.
Joleen was preceded in death by her parents.