Dec 05, 2019 7:30 AM

Joleen F. Brew (1953 - 2019)

Posted Dec 05, 2019 7:30 AM

To everything there is a season, a time for every

matter under heaven; a time to be born,

and a time to die; a time to plant,

and a time to pluck up what is planted;

a time to weep, and a time to laugh,

a time to mourn, and a time to dance;

a time to keep, and a time to cast away.



With profound sadness we announce the passing of Joleen F. (Ackerman) Brew, aged 65. She passed away peacefully in her home on Monday, December 2, 2019.

It’s hard to say goodbye. We wish that we had more time, and perhaps that during the time we had we had spent more of it together. We wish that so much of her life had not been lost to her illness, that things could have been different for her, and for us. While we know that she is at peace and that her struggles are at an end, there is pain and sadness. But even though she is gone, she has left the legacy of her love and perseverance. The ways she touched our lives will remain, and I ask you to keep those memories alive by sharing them with me and with one another.

One of the most important things in Mom’s life was gardening, and she took great pride in her flowers. Gardeners are special people. It takes patience and perseverance and a love for living things to grow a garden or a beautiful flower. Gardening is tedious and hard work, but there is something that gardeners know and experience that others sometimes do not. There is a beauty and a satisfaction in seeing the result of our labor grow and come to fruition. There is a peacefulness that can come over us as we care for and nurture the flowers and plants in a garden. In nurturing living things and helping to bring beauty and peace to the world, gardeners make a difference in the world and make their lives and the lives of those who see their gardens richer and fuller. I think that for Mom, maybe working in the garden was a continuation of her careful nurturing personality. I think it was such a special blessing that just before she passed away, Mom was able to spend a wonderful and unusually long time on the phone with all the grandkids on Thanksgiving day.

She was the beloved mother of Brad, Mother-in-law to April and proud grandmother of Andrew Michael; Chloe Brew; Caleb Brew; and Bryce Brew, as well as other relatives and friends. All of these she loved and touched deeply. She was preceded in death by her husband, Steve V. Brew. This family, and her role as mother and grandmother, was the most important thing to Mom. This is where she drew her strength and left her legacy. Being with her family was what Jo enjoyed most of all. This perseverance through adversity is a powerful lesson for us, and I believe it is her legacy. What a wonderful lesson she gave us. Keep your priorities straight. Keep that which is most important in focus. Love and care for your family. Let them know in all the ways you can show them that you love them. Don’t let adversities or setbacks or any of the distractions of the world keep you from this most important aspect of life.

Please join us celebrating her life Friday evening December 6, 2019 during visitation from 4:00p – 6:00p at the Bates-Gould Funeral Home. Family & friends are invited to attend her graveside service on Monday, December 9 at 2:00 p.m. at Calvary Cemetery. No reception will be held following the graveside services.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to the Alliance Animal Clinic – 903 Flack Ave, Alliance, Nebraska 69301. Your donation will help pay for desperately needed services - we all know how much she loved her dogs!

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Dec 05, 2019 7:30 AM
Marie Sorum (1924-2019)

Ellen Marie (Powell) Sorum passed away unexpectedly Sunday, December 1, 2019 at Highland Park Care Center in Alliance. She was born March 17, 1924 in a sod house southwest of Hemingford, NE to Lawrence and Ellen (Jagger) Powell. She graduated from Hemingford High School at age of 16 and went on to the American School of Business in Omaha in 1942. When they opened the Air Base in Alliance, she came back to work in the Personnel Department for the Army. In 1943, she transferred to the Scottsbluff office.


In the summer of 1943, Keith Sorum happened to be on leave visiting his parents in Scottsbluff, NE. While visiting a friend, he saw her in an office window. He knew immediately he would marry her and she always said how handsome he was in his Navy uniform. They dated every night he was on leave and were engaged by August. Keith then left for Radio School in Boston. They were married in Scottsbluff on March 22, 1944. The day after the wedding they boarded a troop train back to Boston (Marie being the only female on board). Running short on time, Keith had to run to his ship and Marie had to make her way alone In Boston. She had the nerve to tackle the subway system in downtown Boston where

she found a job as a secretary to the manager of the American Laundry Machinery Co. They loved her accent there!


In September 1944, she came back to Alliance while Keith was overseas and started work at the Nebraska Stock Growers Association where she worked until 1990, with a few years off to raise three children. There she did all the typing and ads for the Nebraska Cattleman magazine. She planned their state conventions.


When the war was over in 1946, Keith and Marie moved to a farm just west of Alliance. In 1958, Butch and Dortha Peltz built a new home for them on Cheyenne from a drawing on a paper sack. Keith and Marie lived there until they moved to Highland Park in 2014.


Marie is survived by her three children and their spouses, Sharon (Sorum) Hitchcock (Bruce), Stephen Sorum (Cindy Dingman) and Carla (Sorum) Dingman (Charlie). Grandchildren, Christine (Hitchcock) Stanczak (Chip); Edward Hitchcock; Robert (Vanessa) Hitchcock; Kathryn (Dingman) Sheahan (Brandon); Sarah (Sorum) Petner (Greg); Patrick (Lindsey) Dingman; Michael (Mackenzie) Dingman. Great- Grandchildren include Lily and Lincoln Hitchcock; Ava, Harper, Asher and Ethan Sheahan; Jack and Mia Petner; Riley, Madilynne and Taylor Dingman; Graham and Porter Dingman; sisters-in law, Marjorie and Arlene Powell and several nieces and nephews.


She was preceded in death by her husband, Keith, his parents, her parents and four younger brothers; Lloyd, Ralph, LeRoy, and Dean Powell and sisters-in-law, Dorothy and Vera Powell.


She was a 55+ year member of Chapter GC, P.E.O. and a life-long member of the United Methodist Church. She loved bridge, genealogy, lunch with friends, and her grandchildren who she called the "Magnificent Seven".


Funeral services will be held at 2:00 p.m., Friday, December 6, 2019 at the United Methodist Church with Reverend Gideon Achi officiating. Burial will be in the Alliance Cemetery. Visitation will be from 1-5 pm on Thursday, December 5 at Bates-Gould Funeral Home. A reception will follow the funeral services at the Westside Event Center from 3-5 pm.


Memorials may be made to the United Methodist Church or Nebraska Chapter of the Alzheimer's Association at or mailed to Nebraska Alzheimer's Association, 11711 Arbor Street, Omaha, NE 68144.


Online condolences may be left at Bates-Gould Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.