BLAKE EDWARDS, 55 of Ogallala, passed away Saturday, August 19, 2017, at the Regional West Medical Center in Scottsbluff.
Blake was born May 27, 1962, at Atkinson, Nebraska to Dennis "Buck" and Shirley A. (Aughinbaugh) Edwards. He graduated in the top 5% from Chadron High School with the class of 1980 and went on to graduate Magna Cum Laude from Creighton University, where he obtained a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration
On September 27, 1987, Blake married Shirley Meints at Wymore, Nebraska, and the couple made their home in Omaha, where they managed an apartment complex and Blake worked in insurance. Shortly after their nuptials, Blake returned to Creighton to attend law school where he graduated Cum Laude. In 1991, after obtaining his Doctor of Jurisprudence degree, Blake and his family moved to Ogallala where he worked as an associate at McGinley, Lane, Mueller, O'Donnell & Williams, P.C. L.L.O. Blake eventually became a partner in the firm, where he was active until taking on duties as the Keith County Attorney, and later Dundy County Attorney. Most recently, Blake had been working in private practice law.
Blake dedicated a large portion of his time and efforts toward the betterment of Ogallala's young people over the years. Blake coached his children's football, baseball, basketball, and soccer teams over the years, and spent nearly 27 years as the trap coach. He was a longtime member of Ogallala Optimists and was currently serving on the board. Blake was a committed volunteer; whether it was assisting with the Keith County Fair Breakfast, selling fireworks at the Optimist stand, or providing some of his infamous 5 Beer Chili, Blake had a way of making his presence known and making people chuckle. When a moment called for seriousness, Blake's irreverent and sarcastic humor would typically emerge and elicit a sense of lightheartedness. Blake enjoyed pulling a good prank and was on the receiving end of a few good ones himself over the years.
Despite the demands that community involvement had on his time, Blake worked hard to make time for his family and their needs. Blake started nearly every day cooking breakfast for his family. His children never went to school without a lunch prepared by their dad. Blake made nearly every meal for his family and was widely regarded as a great cook. Chili was a specialty, and Blake's chili, which received a domestic ban from Shirley, was so hot that it required vast amounts of courage to consume.
Blake enjoyed spending time hunting, fishing and working on his beloved Mustang. He was a member of Pheasants Forever, Ducks Unlimited and the NRA. He enjoyed Thursday night poker with friends and playing in golf league. In addition to the Optimists Club, Blake was an active member of both the Elks and Moose Lodges.
Blake was preceded in death by his grandparents, Cecil and Dorothy Edwards & Earl and LouAnn Aughinbaugh.
Survivors include his wife, Shirley of Ogallala; 3 sons, Joel and Eric Edwards, both of Omaha, Trevor Edwards of Ogallala; parents, Buck (Shirley) Edwards of Chadron; 2 brothers, Bart (Kelly) Edwards of Chadron, Dana (Kristi) Edwards of Soldotna, AK; sister, Robyn (Brad) Hicks of Potter; along with many nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.
A memorial has been established in Blake's memory for later designation. Condolences may be shared at prairiehillsfuneralhome.com, where the services will be streamed live for those unable to attend.
Memorial services will be held on Thursday, August 24, 2017, at 10:30 a.m. at the New Hope Church in Ogallala with Pastor Eric Wait officiating. Interment of cremains will be in the Ogallala Cemetery.
Visitation will be on Wednesday, from 1 p.m. until 6 p.m. at the Prairie Hills Funeral Home in Ogallala.
Prairie Hills Funeral Home of Ogallala is in charge of arrangements.