Gary Frank "Shubie" Shubert, 75, of Lexington, Nebraska, died away Monday, May 21st, 2012, at his home in rural Lexington, Nebraska.
He was born February 3rd, 1937, in rural Elm Creek, Nebraska, to E. Frank and Naomi (Wolf) Shubert. Gary attended rural school near Elm Creek and graduated from Elm Creek High School in 1954.
In 1955, Gary enlisted in the Army, spending his service years in Japan as a company clerk. Gary began his lifetime of running while stationed at Camp Zama in Japan, including winning a road race where he was the first non-Japanese runner ever to win. He was honorably discharged as SP5 Sergeant in 1958 and enrolled in classes at Kearney State Teachers College. He majored in Physical Education and minored in Industrial Arts, graduating with a Bachelor's Degree. During college, Gary worked in the construction field, which influenced his later career. Another important event occurred while attending Kearney State, he met and married June McCready on April 16th, 1960, immediately following running in a track meet. They went on a honeymoon and hurried back so that he could run in the Kansas Relays. The couple's first child, Melanie, was born in May of 1961.
While in college, Gary participated in Cross Country and Track. He lettered in both sports each of his four years on the teams, winning many medals and trophies. He competed in the Nationals for each sport all the way through college, including a 9th place personal finish in the Cross Country Nationals. In 2005, he was inducted into the University of Nebraska at Kearney Athletics Hall of Fame, which he felt was a terrific honor.
After college, Gary taught P.E., and Industrial Arts in Marquette, Nebraska, also coaching basketball and starting a cross-country program. He left teaching to become the manager of the Sutton Lumber Company. The family moved to Lexington in 1965 and Gary was assistant Manager of Mead Lumber. Also in 1965, the second child of the family, Brandon, arrived in October.
A year later he became a factory rep for SealRite Windows and soon started Mid Nebraska Cabinet Distributors. Through his other company, G.F. Shubert and Sons, he built houses and did dirt work. The family moved to the Platte River property in June of 1969 when the couple's third child, Tad, was just 5 weeks old. This home became the life-long project for Gary, where he added on and remodeled endlessly. At this home, he was able to enjoy many years of duck, goose, turkey and deer hunting. He enjoyed shooting blue rocks, planting sweet corn and a long list of outdoor activities.
In 1982, Gary began running 10k road races, winning his age group routinely and filling a drawer with t-shirts and medals. Soon he challenged himself to marathons, 26.2 miles and ran about 50 of these over the next 20 years. He achieved a long-held goal of running the Boston Marathon at age 50.
Gary will be sorely missed in Lexington and surrounding communities. "He was a breath of fresh air" when he entered a room.
Gary is survived by his wife of 52 years, June; three children: Melanie Shubert of Lexington; Brandon Shubert and wife Stefanie of Lincoln, Nebraska; Tad Shubert of Long Branch, New Jersey; four grandchildren, Will, Mary Jane and Sam Morgan and Reid Shubert; sister, Margaret Riessland of Amherst, Nebraska.
Gary was preceded in death by his parents and his older brother, Albin.
The family has honored Gary's wishes that his body be cremated.
A Celebration of Life Memorial Service was held Friday, May 25th, 2012, at 11 a.m., at First United Methodist Church in Lexington, with the Rev. Tess Hufford officiating.
A Memorial will be established to the Gary Shubert Memorial Scholarship Fund. Please forward online condolences to the family through: reynoldslovefuneralhome.com.
Reynolds-Love Funeral Home in Lexington is in charge of arrangements.