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1931 Junior 2020

Junior Milleson

January 7, 1931 — April 11, 2020

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Benjamin Franklin Milleson, Jr. was born on January 7, 1931 at his grandparent’s home in Thedford.  When he was 3 years old, his family moved to Elsmere.  Junior attended Thedford high school while staying with his grandparents.  He graduated in 1948.  Junior met his sweetheart Marlene Saner at a dance in Halsey.  He worked for his brother-in-law and sister, Gene and Dana Ruth Fink, until he was drafted to serve in the Army in 1952. 

Junior completed basic training in Fort Riley, Kansas.  He hitchhiked home after basic training to see Marlene before being deployed to Korea.  He was flown from North Platte to San Francisco, and then on to Japan.  From there, he was transported to Korea via boat.  He began his service as a mechanic, and then worked in artillery for the remainder of his tour.  During his time in the Army, he was promoted from Private to Sergeant.  Junior returned home from Korea in 1954, where he continued to work for the Fink family.  On occasional weekends he would travel to Denver to visit Marlene, as she took a job there while he was away. Marlene eventually moved home, and they were married on June 12, 1955.  Junior worked alongside his in-laws Vesta and Dorothy Saner for 10 years before purchasing the ranch he called home in 1961.  During their marriage, Junior and Marlene welcomed four children into their lives: Lishia, Byron, Vonda, and Ryan.  Their second child, Byron, died in an accident at the age of 6.  The loss of Byron was a tragedy never forgotten by Junior. 

One of Junior’s first loves was flying. He began flying lessons prior to deploying to Korea. He earned his license after returning home. At the time, he earned his license faster than any other pilot in Broken Bow, with only 34 hours of flight time. He purchased his first airplane for $625 in 1958. He wrecked his second plane after having it for less than a month after running out of gas midflight due to a broken fuel gauge. Even after selling his last plane, he never lost his love of aviation by continuing to enjoy air shows with friends.

Junior enjoyed the trip he and Marlene took to Alaska in 2009, stating he wished they had gone sooner so they could have gone back a second time. Junior and Marlene begin spending winters in Yuma, AZ, where they made many friends and enjoyed the warm weather.

In addition to ranching his entire life and trucking for years, his hobbies included hunting, golfing, playing cards, watching rodeo, and college football.    

Junior had a fiery temper, and yet was the most kind, compassionate, and loving husband, father, and grandfather to his family. He was most proud of his grandchildren and enjoyed following their endeavors.   

Junior passed away on April 11, 2020 at Brookstone View in Broken Bow, Nebraska. He is preceded in death by his son Bryon, parents Frank and Lola Milleson, sister Dana Ruth and husband Gene Fink, sister Jeanette and husband Bob Edelman, and brother-in-law Dwight and wife Phyllis Saner.  He is survived by his wife Marlene, daughters Lishia (Dennis) of Alta Vista, Iowa; Vonda (Todd) of Cheyenne, Wyoming; and son Ryan (Michelle) of Dunning, Nebraska; his grandchildren Heather (Lyle), Brandon (Jennie), Jace, Britt, Chantelle (Allen), Ty (fiancé Shelby) and Shaylee; and great grandchildren Tayten, Morgan, Braden, Tragen, Aspen, Timber, and Tinlee.    

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests a memorial donation to the Brewster Fire Department in Junior’s honor.

The funeral service will be Thursday, April 16, 2020 at 2:00 p.m. at Govier Brothers Chapel in Broken Bow, NE with Pastor Mark Sievering officiating. Burial will be in the Purdum Cemetery with Military Honors at Purdum, NE. A viewing will be held on Wednesday, April 15, 2020 from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. at Govier Brothers Mortuary in Broken Bow, NE. An online register book can be signed for words of encouragement or remembrance at . The Funeral will be livestreamed on


Govier Brothers will comply with the CDC and State of Nebraska. Govier Brothers Mortuary want to remind people that no more than 10 people will be allowed in the Funeral Home at one time. We sincerely encourage each person to make your decision whether to attend a viewing based on the best interest of health and that of your community.

To order memorial trees in memory of Junior Milleson, please visit our tree store.


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