September 16, 1948 – November 21, 2020
Born in Lincoln, NE
Resided in Lincoln, NE

Daniel (Dan) Ray Washburn

Daniel (Dan) Ray Washburn, age 72, died November 21, 2020. Born September 16, 1948, in Lincoln, Nebraska, to Donald and Merna (Bargstadt) Washburn of Memphis, NE.

He was a hard worker, storyteller and valued building relationships and serving his community. He married Katherine (Kathy) Smollen on September 20, 1969, and later moved to Gretna, NE, where he spent 41 years before moving to Lincoln.

An avid fisherman and hunter, Dan belonged to several Gretna civic groups and the city planning board. He enjoyed serving as volunteer for events sponsored by the Gretna American Legion, Optimist Club and Boy Scouts, especially when something like cooking pancakes or working a picnic or fish fry was involved. He was a founding member of the Gretna Chamber of Commerce in 1984 and served on the 1986 Gretna Centennial executive committee. For his lifetime of service to the community, he was recognized by the Gretna Chamber as the Gretna Citizen of the Year in 2019. He spent 34 years working alongside Kathy as an American Family Insurance agent in Gretna and Ashland before retiring in 2010.

Shortly before his retirement, Dan took up competitive barbecue cooking, joining the Greater Omaha BBQ Society (GOBS), and found success by winning many state and regional competitive BBQ awards. Even in retirement, he continued to volunteer for his homeowner’s association and at the Thomas Riverside Acres community. Dan never met a stranger and was always quick with a story or joke and loved finding connections with people through friends he had known over the years.

He is survived by his wife Kathy Washburn, son Andy (Ashley) Washburn, and grandchildren Evan and Claire Washburn, all of Lincoln; his four siblings, Douglas (Barb) Washburn, Shari (Dave) Nygren, Beverly (Mark) Hohensee, all of Ashland, and D. Scott Washburn of Las Vegas, Nevada; brother-in-law Bill Smollen of Omaha; and sister-in-law Paula (John) Cusano of Newfield, New York. He will be missed by numerous nieces and nephews, friends, and other family members. Preceded in death by his parents, Donald and Merna, and parents-in-law Paul and Virginia Smollen.

Celebration of Life services will be held at a later date. Memorial contributions may be directed towards the family for future designation.


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