Deacon Robert Emil Puhalla Sr.


September 17, 1947 ~ September 29, 2020

  • Deacon Robert Emil Puhalla Sr.
    Deacon Robert Emil Puhalla Sr.

Deacon Robert Emil Puhalla Sr., 73, of Grand Island, entered Heaven’s gates, on Tuesday, September 29, 2020 at CHI Health-St. Francis.

Mass of Christian Burial will be 10:30 AM Friday, October 16th at St. Mary’s Cathedral. Celebrating Mass will be Father James Golka and Priests of the Grand Island Diocese. To help protect others, facemasks are required. Entombment of ashes will be in the Cedarview Cemetery near Doniphan. Military honors will be rendered by the United Veterans Honor Guard and the U.S. Army.

Family will be greeting friends from 6-7 PM with a Vigil Service beginning at 7 PM on Thursday, October 15th at St. Mary’s Cathedral. Memorials are suggested to St. Mary’s Cathedral. All Faiths Funeral Home is serving the family.

Robert was born on September 17, 1947 at Pawnee City, NE. He was the oldest son of the late Emil and Josephine (Weber) Puhalla. He was raised on the family farm outside of Steinauer, Ne, and graduated from Table Rock Public High School in 1965.

Robert enlisted in the U.S. Army, received training as a Clinical Specialist Medic, and served one year in Vietnam in the 1st Calvary Division as a 91C. Upon returning stateside he married the love of his life, the late Susan Jean Davis, on “the hottest day possible”, July 12, 1969. They resided at Fort Bliss Army Base in El Paso, Texas until his discharge in 1970.

They returned to Nebraska and welcomed 3 very special children into their lives, Keisha Anne (Tom) Mudloff, Robert Emil (Angela) Puhalla Jr. and Ann Marie (Carl) Pedersen. Robert treasured his children as much as they treasured him.

Robert had an unwavering faith in God. After many years in the computer programming field, he pursued his calling from the Lord to serve the church. He was ordained a Deacon in May 2010, at St. Mary’s Cathedral, where he had been a member since 1980. After “retiring” in 2018, he dedicated over 40 hours a week to his faith. The community, the church, and the parishioners were very dear to Deacon Robert. Therefore, in lieu of flowers, memorials are suggested to St. Mary’s Cathedral in his memory.

Robert’s other enjoyments in life included reading, dancing with his clogging dance group, time spent on the firing range, trying new recipes to share with his family and flying.

In addition to his children he is also survived by his siblings, Ronald (Beverly) Puhalla, Elaine (Arlyn) Parde, Evelyn Puhalla, and Emma (Rick) Penkava; grandchildren that he absolutely treasured, Caitlin (Chase), Shauna, Whitney, Alivia, Erin, Cerise and Matthew, and his beloved great-grandchildren, Jamesson, Khyreese, Landen, Sophia, and Serianne, as well as numerous other family members whom he loved dearly.