David has lived a full life of 102 years.
In his early 20s, David spent a short time in San Diego before being drafted into the Army. He dedicated nearly five heroic years to serving his country during an uneasy time. He helped build the Alaskan Highway to ensure safe transportation of American freight from the Japanese, trained to fight in Attu, the only battle held on American soil, then built an entire air force base before ending his military service in Florida as WWII ended.
Not knowing what to do next, David returned to his hometown of Dannebrog, NE. It was love at first sight when he noticed a beautiful girl strolling through downtown. Eileen and David dated long distance for several months while she was an elementary teacher in Dannebrog and David attended the University Nebraska at Lincoln studying accounting. The couple exchanged nearly 120 love letters. Finally, together again, they married on December 25th.
Then for nearly 20 years, David worked for the Railroad Post Office. He sorted mail on the trains from North Platte, NE to Cheyenne, WY until the establishment of zip codes abolished his job. David, Eileen and their three kids then moved to Omaha. David was the Dean of Business at Nettleton Business College in Omaha for many years before completing his career at the Metropolitan Area Planning Agency working on major projects such as the Gene Leahy Mall.
Retiring at age 65 didn’t slow him down. David and Eileen would leave the Nebraska humidity to spend summers at their cabin near Central City, CO, enjoying the cool, crisp Rocky Mountain air.
In recent years though, David’s COPD has progressed, making it more difficult to travel. It had been nearly a year since he visited his sister who lives in Grand Island. David wished for her to be a part of his upcoming milestone, turning 102 years old! When Robert, Social Worker at Every Step Hospice heard of David’s hope to spend this special birthday with his younger sister, he knew something had to be done. That’s when he called Dreamweaver Foundation.
David’s Dream came true… Mayme spent a week celebrating her brother’s birthday with him! But the week was full of more surprises than just Mayme’s visit. David was the Grand Marshall of the Fox Run parade, received a special birthday concert from his dear friend, Dr. Christensen, and the cherry on top was a visit with a former Husker football player from the early 70s, Van Brownson. It was a week of celebrating for a very deserving 102nd birthday!
Thank you Every Step Hospice for nominating David, Heritage at Fox Run for hosting Mayme and Daily Nonpareil for featuring David’s story. https://www.nonpareilonline.com/news/good_news/david-appel-turns-enjoys-a-week-of-celebration/article_308278ac-a8e5-5c09-9d44-7a816327680a.html