Dr. Allen G. Blezek, 74, of Lincoln, Nebraska and formerly of Randolph, Iowa entered into rest on Monday, July 6, 2020 at The Monarch (hospice facility) in Lincoln.
Allen was a University of Nebraska-Lincoln Professor and Department Head Emeritus, NU Department of Agricultural Leadership Education and Communication; founding Director Emeritus, NU Center for Leadership Development; Director Emeritus, Nebraska LEAD (Leadership Education/Action Development) Program. Past President: Lincoln East Rotary, NU Faculty Senate, NE FFA Foundation, NU Emeriti Association and Lancaster County Extension.
The family will greet relatives and friends with visitation and viewing at Nishna Valley Funeral Home Friday evening, July10, 2020 from 6:00 to 8:00 pm with social distancing. A private, family only, funeral service will be held at 1:00 pm at the funeral home on Saturday. You are welcome to join the family for the service through Facebook Live by visiting the Nishna Valley Funeral and Cremation Services Facebook Page. Graveside services will be held at 2:30 pm on Saturday, July 11, 2020 at the Randolph Cemetery where everyone is welcome to attend and encouraged to bring their own lawn chair. Memorials in Allen's name are being directed to the Nebraska Farm Bureau Foundation, the University of Nebraska Foundation or to the HoriSun Hospice Foundation in Lincoln.
Allen Gerald Blezek was born August 16, 1945 at Hamburg, Iowa and passed from this world on July 6, 2020 in Lincoln, Nebraska after a courageous battle with cancer.
The youngest of three children born to Clair and Dorothy (Dodd) Blezek of Randolph, Iowa, Allen grew up on the family farm located three miles south of Randolph. Allen attended grade school at the Randolph Consolidated School and then graduated from the Fremont-Mills Community High School in Tabor, Iowa with the Class of 1962. He was a lifelong member of the Randolph Presbyterian Church. In addition to helping his parents on the family farm he also worked on neighboring farms earning money to attend college. He graduated from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln with a Bachelor’s Degree in Agricultural Education in 1966 and then returned to Fremont County (Iowa) where he taught Vocational Agriculture in the Hamburg Public Schools for six years. During this time, he received his Master’s Degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 1968.
Allen left teaching in Hamburg to complete the residency requirements for a Doctor of Philosophy Degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and was awarded a PhD in 1973. After a short time as Coordinator of Career Education with the Lincoln (NE) Public Schools he joined the staff in the Department of Agricultural Education at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. At the University he was responsible for development of the Nebraska Vocational Agriculture Core Curriculum which was distributed to all high schools with ag programs throughout Nebraska. He was a classroom teacher and became active in campus politics. He soon was recognized with the university-wide Distinguished Teaching Award and later became President of the University of Nebraska Faculty Senate. He also served as a Unit Administrator as the Department Head of Agricultural Education for eight years and founding Director of the Nebraska LEAD Program from 1984 until his retirement in 2008. He had many opportunities to travel throughout his career, traveling to some 90 countries one or more times. His first travels were to India, as he was named a Rotary Group Study “Fellow” in the early 1980’s. Because of this he always felt particularly close to Rotary and his Lincoln Northeast Rotary Club friends. Another of his favorite travels was, with University of Nebraska President Ronald Roskens, to the People's Republic of China also in the early 1980’s. More recently he has served as President of the Nebraska Farm Bureau Foundation, past President of the Nebraska Rural Radio Foundation, past President of the University of Nebraska Emeriti Association, past member and Board President of the Lancaster County Extension Board and a member, honoree and board member of the Nebraska Hall of Ag Achievement.
On June 20, 1992, Allen was united in marriage to Kay Walker Boone. They enjoyed entertaining friends in their home, attending and participating in community events and had many opportunities to travel together throughout the United States and the world.
Preceding Allen in death were his parents; sister and brother-in-law, Marilyn and Bill Rhodes; and brother, Donald Blezek. Left to cherish his memory are his wife Kay; two step-children, Tony Boone and wife Ann of Omaha, NE and Lisa Holmes and husband Brian of Shenandoah, IA; grandchildren, Payton Boone and Brianna, Adrianna and Evan Holmes; sister-in-law, Judith Blezek of Glenwood, IA; brothers and sisters-in-law, Linda and Mike Burnison, Brian and Christy Walker and Clay and Kim Walker, all of Essex, IA; along with a host of nieces, nephews and cousins and friends.
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