In memory of
Richard J. "Dick" Payne, 77, of Grand Island died Wednesday, April 10, 2013, at his home surrounded by his family. Mr. Payne's wishes were to be cremated. A celebration of his life will be at 1:30 p.m. Saturday at Curran Funeral Chapel. Mr. Payne was born April 18, 1935, at Ericson to Gerald and Julia (Sanford) Payne. Survivors of the immediate family include his wife of 57 years, Irene of Grand Island; three sons and two daughter-in-laws, Steve and Deb Payne of Grand Island, Jerry and Joy Payne of Woodbine, Iowa and Greg Payne of Omaha; one brother and two sisters-in-law, Gail and Marie Payne of Ericson, Arlene Payne of Broken Bow; eight grandchildren and four great-grandchildren. Dick grew up in Ericson graduating from Ericson High School in 1952. He married Irene Thomas on June 5, 1955, at Ericson. They lived south of Ord, where he farmed, before moving to Grand Island in 1956. He entered the US Marine Corp serving from July 31, 1957 until his honorable discharge on Sept. 17, 1957. Dick purchased his farm in 1961, he farmed and was a dairy farmer and operated a welding/machine shop. After the 1980 tornado, he quit farming but continued the welding /machine shop until ill health prevented him from working. In his younger years Dick and his family competed throughout the United States in tractor pulling. Dick held several officer positions in the Tractor Pulling Association. He was especially proud of the "Mean Machine" that he built and pulled at the national competition in Louisville, Ky., winning the event 1975. He enjoyed being with his family, fishing, hunting and always left you with a good story. Tug, his black Lab could always be found at his side. Dick was a member of the Platt-Duetshce Society, and the NRA. He was preceded in death by his parents, and brothers, Don, Ed and Gary. In lieu of flowers, a memorial fund is being established by the family in Dick's name. You may sign the online guestbook at theindependent.com .
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