Saturday, September 8, 2012

Travis W. Witte December 17, 1990 to September 5, 2012

Blue Hill resident Travis Walter Witte, 21 died Wednesday September 5 as a result of a motor vehicle accident.
Services are 10 a.m. Monday at Trinity Lutheran Church in Blue Hill with the Rev. Joshua Lowe and the Rev. James Witt officiating.  Burial is at Blue Hill Cemetery in Blue Hill.  Visitation is Saturday from 1 to 8 and Sunday at Merten-Butler Mortuary in Blue Hill and one hour prior to services at the church on Monday.
Memorials can be directed to the Blue HIll 9-5-2012 Memorial Fund.

Travis Walter Witte was born on December 17, 1990, to Norman and Penny (Seeman) Witte in Hastings, Nebraska.  He was baptized into the Christian faith on January 6, 1991, and confirmed on April 24, 2005, at Trinity Lutheran Church in Blue Hll.
Travis attended Blue Hill public Schools, graduating with the class of 2009.  In High School Travis enjoyed FFA, basketball, track, golf, and football.  He was a member of the 2006 and 2007 state football runner-up teams and the 2008 state football chamionship team.  Travis chose as his  life's vocation  farming with his dad with their John Deere equipment.  He had many passions including, John Deere equipment, golfing, Duke basketball, LeBron James, New England Patriots,  Huskers, pick-up demoing, hunting, Ford, dogs and mostly just spending time with family and friends.  He loved life and lived it to the fullest.  He will be greatly missed by all.

Travis is survived by his parents Norman and Penny of Blue Hill, one brother, Scott (Lindsey), Sydney, Pyper and Nyla of Hastings, Three sisters, Rachel Witte and fiance Phil Runyan, (Angel Runyan), April (Brandon) Hotovy of Grand Island, Maci Witte of Blue Hill, Nebraska, Grandparens, Walter and LaVera Witte of Blue HIll, Kathy Seeman of Blue HIll; Aunts and Uncles, Julie (Bill) Zimmerman of Blue HIll, Sherri (John) Lynn of Ayr, Hank (Rochelle) of Blue Hill, ; Cousins, Matt (Sara) Zimmerman, Jerome and Billy of Ayr, Rocky (Chandra) Zimmerman, McKenzie and Ryder of Ayr,,  Sarah (Brent) Sexton, Brady and Zoe of Minden, Brian (Janice) Lynn, Ayr, McLayne and Wyatt Seeman of Blue Hill, a host of extended family an friends.
Travis was preceded in death by his grandfather, Donald Seeman and one nephew Javin Witte. 

Travis Witte was such a farm boy he painted his living room in John Deere green.
With yellow trim.
"He was a farmer from the day he was born," said his mother, Penny Witte. "I put a hat on him when he was six months old."
And that was it.
He farmed with his dad, Norm, growing up, and did it full time after graduating from high school in 2009.
"This has been their goal and dream, to make it go," she said of the family farm.
Then, on Wednesday afternoon, the 21-year-old was behind the wheel of a semi truck, hauling hay bales to his family's farm, when he collided with a school bus at a rural intersection. He died, along with the bus driver and two students on the bus.
Travis was a defensive end on the Blue Hill football team in high school -- No. 20 -- proud that his team won the state championship for the first time when he was a senior. He acted in plays in high school, went to Boys State and was nice to everybody.
"He always wanted to put a smile on someone's face, wanted to help people," said his sister, Rachel.
He was a groomsman in his sister,  April's wedding in July.
He loved demolition events -- participating in a pickup truck demo at the State Fair this year -- and painted his truck green and yellow.  Like a John Deere. 
He loved Duke basketball, and he loved golf. He and his dad had that -- and deer hunting and many other things -- in common, his mom said.
They golfed together at a Father's Day tournament held in honor of his grandpa, Don Seeman and Steve Frazier.
In their home, the Wittes have his senior picture, the pose that was his idea: Standing between two old tractors, a  John Deere owned by his grandpa Don Seeman and a  International owned by his grandpa Walt Witte.
Because that's what Travis loved: family and farming.
"A farmer has to have it in his blood or he just can't do it," his mom said. "I think it was in his blood."

Over 1000 mourners gathered in Blue Hill at the Trinity Lutheran Church today to say goodbye to Travis.  The Pastor read a line from an autobiography that Travis had written about himself in eighth grade. He said  “What I want most in life is to be a good Christian,” Witte wrote. “To care more about others. I want to get to heaven someday. I also want to help others get to heaven, too.”
 He rode to his final resting place in the back of his grey Ford pickup truck accompanied by the boys of his High school class.  The Pall bearers wore dark suits and green john deere caps. The caps were embrodried in the back with T.W.W. #20, Travis Walter Witte and Travis' high school football uniform number.  The same green with yellow deer "farmer style" cap was on the heads of family following behind as they drove to the Blue Hill Cemetery.   The young man who dreamed of farming and so much more was laid to rest.    
Don't grieve for me, for now I'm free
I'm following the path God laid for me.
I took His hand when I heard Him call;
I turned my back and left it all.

I could not stay another day,
To laugh, to love, to work or play.
Tasks left undone must stay that way;
I found that place at the close of day.
If my parting has left a void,
Then fill it with remembered joy.
A friendship shared a laugh, a kiss;
Ah yes, these things, I too will miss.
Be not burdened with times of sorrow
I wish you the sunshine of tomorrow.
My life's been full, I savored much;
Good friends, good times, a loved ones touch.
Perhaps my time seems all to brief;
Don't lengthen it now with undue grief.
Lift up your heart and share with me,
God wanted me now, He set me free.

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