Charles “Chuck” F. Vyhnalek
June 16, 1938 – Aug. 3, 2019
Charles “Chuck” Frederick Vyhnalek, 81, passed away unexpectedly on Aug. 3, 2019, at 10:59 p.m. He was surrounded by his loving family as he passed at Bryan Health West. Chuck was born June 16, 1938, to Emil “Bud” and Olga (Mundt) Vyhnalek in Lincoln. He was a lifelong member of Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Crete, where he was baptized, confirmed and united in marriage to Patricia Armstrong on June 24, 1961. To this union, three children were born, Andrea, Craig and Allison. He attended Northward Elementary School and graduated from Crete High School in 1956.
As a young boy he began working for his uncle at Keystone Grocery and then continued at Western Auto in Crete. He then started working for the State of Nebraska Department of Roads, retiring in 2000 as the Division Head of Contracts and Lettings. Chuck joined the Crete Volunteer Fire and Rescue Department in September 1960. During his 59 years of service, he held the offices of secretary/treasurer, vice president and served as the department president for 30 years. He served on the Crete City Council from 1976 to 1988 and 2002 to present.
In his retirement Chuck continued to be active in CVFD, responding to many, many fires, rescues and ambulance transfers. He was always proud of his prompt response times and he was consistently one of the top responders. He was instrumental in training young firefighters in pump operations and was a role model and mentor to many. In recent years, Chuck found enjoyment driving a school bus for Crete Public Schools.
He is survived by his wife of 58 years, Pat of Crete; daughter, Andrea (Brad) Heffelfinger of Papillion; son, Craig (Tonja) Vyhnalek, and daughter, Allison Vyhnalek of Wilber; his treasured grandchildren, Nicholas, Megan and Jacob Heffelfinger and Zachary, Cameron and Garrett Vyhnalek; his grandpups, Mollie, Sadie and Bojangles, and great-grandpup, Jäger; sister, Suzie (Richard) Znamenacek of Lincoln; sister-in-law, Noreen (Wally) Wild of Crete; brother-in-law, Arnold Henning of Lincoln; sister-in-law, Marge Armstrong of Columbus; many nieces, nephews, cousins, friends and extended family, including a special great-great-niece, Caitlyn Yost of Crete.
He was preceded in death by his parents; mother and father-in-law, Galen and Evelyn Armstrong; sister-in-law, LeAnn Henning; and brothers-in-law, Bob and Darrell Armstrong.
A funeral service was held Aug. 6, 2019, at Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Crete. Condolences may be sent to the family at www.kunclfh.com.