Cover photo for Lyle Fred Stearley's Obituary
Lyle Fred Stearley Profile Photo
1925 Lyle 2022

Lyle Fred Stearley

June 1, 1925 — September 25, 2022

Lyle Fred Stearley, 97, formerly of Shelton, NE passed away on Sunday, September 25, 2022 at CHI Health St. Francis in Grand Island.

Visitation will be from 12:00 to 1:30 PM on Wednesday, September 28, 2022 at Apfel Funeral Home in Grand Island. Burial with military honors will follow at 2 PM in the Shelton Cemetery. A memorial fund has been established in memory of Lyle.

Lyle was born in Shelton, NE on June 1, 1925 to Fred and Nancy (Tabor) Stearley. He was baptized at the United Methodist Church in Shelton on December 15, 1974. Lyle attended school at District 37 and high school in Shelton. He also attended NYA School at Kearney, NE specializing as a Machinist.

Lyle was a veteran of World War II and served in the Marine Corp in Asiatic Pacific. He was awarded the Bronze Star by the President of the United States for heroic achievement while serving with Company B, Fifth Tank, Battalion, Fifth Marine Division on Iwo Jima Volcano Islands in 1945. Lyle returned to Shelton in 1946 and opened an auto garage with his brother Everett, called “Stearley Garage”. He belonged to the American Legion Post 297 and was a former member of Eagles of Grand Island and was a volunteer fireman.

On May 28, 1949 he married Betty Mortensen in Kearney, NE. They lived their 70+ years together in Shelton. This marriage was blessed with three children: Jerry, Jo, and Jeff. In 1954 he started working for KNEnergy Natural Gas Co. Lyle retired from there in 1987.

He was very devoted to his family, home and extended family including nieces and nephews. Lyle enjoyed sports, especially football. He loved to read, play with the family and neighbors’ dogs, travel, working with wood, gardening, watching westerns and was always fixing things. He was brave, tolerant, and compassionate. Humor and good will were his response to adversity and he maintained his optimism throughout his final days.

He is survived by one son, Jerry (Pam) of Lincoln, NE; daughter, Jo (Steve) of Fort Collins, CO; five grandchildren: Robin Stearley and Amy Stearley of Lincoln, NE, Bobbi Potthoff of Stratton, NE, Jennifer Wiese of Fort Collins, CO, and Kyle Taggart (Krissy) of Fort Morgan, CO; eight great grandchildren: Hailey and Hannah Wiese of Fort Collins, CO, Julia, Jocelyn, and Jeff Potthoff of Stratton, NE, Isaac Callicoatt of Lincoln, NE, and Kyleigh and Rhyan McCollum-Taggart of Fort Morgan, CO; and many nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Betty; son, Jeff; his parents; brothers, Gerald, Elmer, Everett, Dale and Orville; and his sister, Bernice Buck.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Lyle Fred Stearley, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Wednesday, September 28, 2022

12:00 - 1:30 pm (Central time)

Apfel Funeral Home - Grand Island

1123 West 2nd Street, Grand Island, NE 68801

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


Wednesday, September 28, 2022

Starts at 2:00 pm (Central time)

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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