Dean Weston Morse
Dean Weston Morse was born in Fargo, ND on November 24, 1934 to Ralph and Mable Morse. He was the youngest of thirteen siblings, 8 boys and 4 girls. At the age of four months, he moved with his family to Minneapolis, MN. He lived in this area until he joined the US Navy at the age of 18. He enjoyed playing sports and especially hockey.
He began playing hockey at a young age and played in and around the state of Minnesota during his high school years. At the age of 16, he signed a contract to play professional hockey for the Toronto Mapleleafs. However, during a championship game, he was injured protecting the goal during a sudden death playoff situation and he decided that hockey was not the right choice for his life.
He joined the US Navy on March 3, 1953 and attended boot camp in San Diego, CA. In the Navy he found a home and a job he loved. He remained in the Navy for 8 years and then, because of family needs, he left the Navy and enlisted in the US Air Force where he served 4 years. The Navy was his first love though and at the end of his Air Force enlistment, he returned to the Navy where he continued to serve until his retirement on July 27, 1976. He served his country in both the Korean War and the Vietnam War. He traveled around the world and served on 19 different ships during his military career.
He married Donna Dahlgren in Minneapolis, MN in July, 1955. They had 5 children. They were divorced in March, 1973. Shortly after his divorce he met a young woman, DeAnn Collins who was also in the Navy. Dean and DeAnn were married on January 12, 1974 in Oxnard, CA. She was 18 years his junior and everyone said it wouldn't last but on January 12, 2014, they celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary.
In March, 1978, Dean and DeAnn moved to Alliance, NE where DeAnn had grown up. In August, 1986, they moved to Claremore, Ok where DeAnn attended Rogers State College. They moved to Apache Junction, AZ in the fall of 1989 where they resided until 2003. They both loved to travel and camp. In 2003, they sold their home in AZ, moved into their RV, and spent the next 5 years traveling
throughout the United States until Dean's declining health caused them to give up their travels.
They moved Ainsworth, NE in 2008, where DeAnn's youngest sister and family lived. They continued to travel short distances and camp when Dean was able. He enjoyed going to local school events and attending their nieces and nephews baseball games.
Dean passed away on June 13, 2014 at the Rock County Hospital in Bassett, NE.
Dean is survived by his wife DeAnn, daughters Sandie Berry and husband Jim of Corona, CA, Bonnie Sauls and Brenda Norman, both of El Paso, TX, 8 grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren.
He is also survived by his parents-in-law, Martin and Lois Collins of Alliance, NE, sisters-in-law Terri Collins of Alliance, Sharon Trumble and husband Mike of Alliance, Lynelle Bump and husband Bryce of Elkhorn, NE and Wanda Raymond and husband Chris of Ainsworth, NE, brothers-in-law Bryan Collins of Alliance and Dale Collins and wife Natalie of Alliance and numerous nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his son Dean, Jr., daughter Judy, grandson Todd, his parents, his 7 brothers, Harvey, Ralph, Kyle, Walter, Ronald, Robert and Kenneth and his 4 sisters, Lucille, Doris, Donnabelle and Mildred .
Funeral services for will be Thursday, June 19, 2014 at 10:00 a.m. at Holy Rosary Catholic Church in Alliance, NE. Visitation will be Wednesday at the church from 6:00 p.m. until the wake service at 7:00 p.m. Burial will be in the Nebraska Veterans Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, memorials have been suggested to the American Legion Post #79 in Ainsworth, NE, the Wounded Warriors Project or a veterans organization of the donor's choice.
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