The Sidney Sun-Telegraph - Serving proudly since 1873 as the beautiful Nebraska Panhandle's first newspaper

Dena L. Wernsman


Dena L. Wernsman, 52, of Arapahoe, Neb. passed away Sun., Feb. 1, 2015, at Good Samaritan Hospital, in Kearney. She was born on Feb. 5, 1962 in Wray, Colo. to Howard & Helen (Schwaderer) Burton. When Dena was a young girl, her family moved back to the family homestead in the Sand Hills of Nebraska. It was there where Dena learned to mend fence, ride a horse, and her steadfast worth ethic was developed. Dena went to school at Ellsworth Elementary in Ellsworth, Neb. She graduated from Hyannis High School in Hyannis, Neb. with the Class of 1980. She went on to Rapid City School of Business and received her degree in Business Management. She was united in marriage with Jeffrey R. Wernsman on May 20, 1989 at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church in Sidney, Nebraska. Their union was blessed with two sons, Austin and Tanner.

Dena was a general manager of McDonalds in Sidney for 12 years. Dena then went on to manage Apria Health Care in Sidney, and later took over the North Platte branch as well. She received the "Circle of Excellence" award for her work with Apria Health Care. She took great pride in providing the utmost care for her patients. In May of 2013, Dena, Jeff and their two sons moved to Arapahoe for the opportunity to manage a small business together as a family. In addition to her professional career, Dena dedicated numerous hours to the Sidney Federation Wrestling program. Dena was passionate about supporting high school wrestling in both Sidney and Arapahoe. She enjoyed watching college football and was an avid Cornhusker fan. Dena loved camping with family and friends, especially on the beaches of Lake McConaughy. In 2014, Dena and Jeff celebrated 25 years of marriage by taking a family trip to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. Dena will always be remembered as a devoted wife, loving mother, and a dedicated friend to many.

Dena was preceded in death by her mother Helen, mother and father–in-law: Harold & Henrietta Wernsman. She is survived by her husband Jeff Wernsman, two sons Austin and Tanner Wernsman, and father Howard Burton, all of Arapahoe, her brothers; Gene (Jane) Burton of Norton, Kan., Jim (Peggy) Burton of Grant, Neb. and Howard Dean Jr. (Mary) Burton of Mesa, Ariz., sister-in-laws; Jodel Wernsman of Hendersonville, Tenn. and Judi (Gary) Roach of Sidney, nieces and nephews; Jeff Burton, Eric Burton, Pat Burton, Leslie West, Megan Marquardt, Howard Burton III, Christine Burton, Kevin Burton, Allyson Williams, Whitni Roach, Ryan Roach, Brenan Roach, and numerous great nieces & nephews.

Condolences or personal reflections may be left at Donations can be made to the "Dena Wernsman Memorial Fund" which will go towards supporting organizations she was passionate about.

Viewing and visitation will be Thursday, Feb. 5, 2015, from 10 a.m. until 8 p.m. at the Wenburg Funeral Home in Arapahoe. Funeral services will be Feb. 6, 2015, at 10:30 a.m. at Trinity Lutheran Church with Rev. James Moshier, officiating. Interment will be at the Arapahoe Cemetery, in Arapahoe. Wenburg Funeral Home in Arapahoe is in charge of the arrangements.

A memorial service will be held at St. Patrick's Church in Sidney on Sat., Feb. 28 at 2 p.m.


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