Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Naomi McCafferty passes away at age 90

A private memorial service will be held for Naomi Joyce Howard McCafferty, age 90, of WhitneyNE. Friends of the family are invited to join the family at 3:00 PM on Friday, June 5, 2015 at the Howard Homestead, 141 Whitney Spur, for coffee and cookies.
Naomi’s cremains will be buried at the Whitney Cemetery
A memorial has been established. Donations may be given to the James and Naomi McCafferty Scholarship Fund, Chadron Community Foundation, 100 Main StreetChadronNE69337.
Naomi Howard McCafferty passed away on Sunday, May 31, 2015 
at Crest View Care Center in ChadronNE. She was born March 30, 1925 in WhitneyNE, the only child of William N. Howard and Irene Goodell Howard. She attended Whitney School for most of her primary and secondary education. At the age of seven, she was completely paralyzed by polio and attended third grade at the Nebraska Orthopedic Hospital in Lincoln while rehabilitating. Seven years later, she was again paralyzed with polio and took her sophomore year of high school by correspondence through the University of Nebraska. She graduated in 1942 from Whitney High School.
After taking a year off from her education, she enrolled at Chadron State College, where she majored in physics and graduated with a Bachelor's of Arts degree in 1947. During her senior year, she taught physics at Chadron High School and was a Science Lab Assistant at CSC from 1947-1955. 

(Note: The above photo was taken during Naomi's years as a Lab Assistant at Chadron State College.  With Naomi (at left) are long-time faculty members Dr. Lyle Andrews and Minnie Lichte.  Photo courtesy of Shelley McCafferty and Con Marshall)
While attending CSC, Naomi was courted by James S. McCafferty, a chemistry major from Alliance. In 1950, Naomi and Jim were married at the Whitney United Methodist Church, and they resided on the Howard homestead just outside Whitney. In addition to raising their four children, Naomi and Jim cared for foster children and invited various college students to reside in their home. Naomi cared for her parents, William and Irene Howard, until they passed away in 1976 and 1958, respectively. After Jim’s retirement from Chadron State College, they often traveled with their children and grandchildren, in whom they took great pride.
Although her affliction with polio left her physically diminished and relying on crutches most of her life, Naomi was driven to care for her family, contribute to the community, and make improvements to the Howard homestead. She served on the Whitney School board for multiple terms and was active in the Whitney Methodist Church. She frequently called upon and assisted elderly members of the community. Eventually Naomi became reliant on a wheelchair, and in 2006, she and Jim joined Chadron United Methodist Church, which was accessible to the handicapped.
Naomi was preceded in death by husband James Steven McCafferty and parents William and Irene Howard.
She is survived by children James Duff (Ro) McCafferty of Rapid City, SD, Howard Martin McCafferty of Iowa City, IA, Steven Todd (Carol) McCafferty of Iowa City, IA, and Shelley McCafferty of Whitney; grandchildren Jennifer (Andrew) Webb of Fort Collins, CO, Michael (Melissa) McCafferty of Oceanside, CA, Kaitlin (Nick) Stoysich of Omaha, NE, Ryan McCafferty of Omaha, NE, and Nolan McCafferty and Alayna McCafferty, both of Iowa City, IA; and great-grandchildren Adler Day Webb and Zander James McCafferty.