- William Stokely, Funeral Director
- Anastasia Stokely
- Shea Stokely
- Joan Priebnow
- Theresa Perry
- Stan Giese
- John Nitzsche
- Vincent Maly
- Patty Stary
History of the Stokely Funeral Home
The current location of the Stokely Funeral Home has a colorful history. On the corner was Thompson Brothers Drug Store, established in 1887. C.A. Bernhardt Barber Shop started to the west in 1892. Kase Harness Shop was located in the east part of the building for some time. Hugos Sheet Metal and Plumbing House was located next to it in the early 1900s. In the spring of 1913, Bethscheiders Photography Shop opened above the Thompson Brothers Drug Store. In the 1930s, the east part of the building became Beckenhauers Law Office. To the west, Emile Vogeltance had a grocery store for a while, and to the east, Dr. Hampton, an eye doctor, had an office upstairs.
Yargers Jewelry was located in part of the building until relocating to Main Street. The Thompson Brothers Drug Store became the Donald S. McPherson Drug Store in 1936, which then became the Bertolini Drug Store and later the Jahnke Paint Store. The Ben Stalp Funeral Home, previously located across the street, was established in the entire building in 1955. In 2000, the Stalp Funeral Home was sold and Bill Stokely became the manager. Bill established ownership of the funeral home in January of 2003, and in the fall of 2004, Stalp Funeral Home changed its name to Stokely Funeral Home to reflect the true ownership of the firm.
In 2006, Stokely Funeral Home purchased the former Coprata Pharmacy building in Dodge, Nebraska. The building held the Emporium business when purchased and was renovated to be available for viewing and small visitations. Both locations offer their surrounding communities full funeral services from the staff of Stokely Funeral Home in West Point.
The Stokely Family
Bill grew up in Valentine, Nebraska where he attended kindergarten through 12th grade and graduated from high school in 1982. He went to Chadron State College where he met his future wife, Anastasia Wess. He was in the National Guard, attended Mid Plains Community College in North Platte and worked part time at Adams and Swanson Funeral Home. He attended the Dallas Institute of Mortuary Science and then continued working in the same funeral home in North Platte. On December 31, 1987 Bill and Stasia were married in North Platte. Bill worked in North Platte until early in 1997 when he and Stasia moved to his hometown, Valentine, and renovated the Old Historic Sandhill Mansion, converting it into a Bed and Breakfast. In May of 2000 Bill took over as the manager of Stalp Funeral Home in West Point, Nebraska and then in January of 2003 he established ownership of the firm. Bill has been involved in the teen and adult St. Mary's church choirs, is a member of the West Point Arts Council, is currently a 4th degree member of the Knights of Columbus, and is a member of Optimists.
Stasia was born in Lemars, Iowa and grew up in Chadron, Nebraska. She graduated from high school in the class of 1983 and attended Chadron State College where her dad was a professor. In 1987, Stasia graduated from Chadron State College with a degree in biology. On New Year's Eve of that year she and Bill were married in North Platte. She went back to school to study nurse's training and graduated at the top of her class in 1992. She has worked as an R.N. in a doctor's office, nursing home and hospital. She also helped manage the Valentine Bed and Breakfast. After moving to West Point in August of 2000, she began working at the Dinklage Medical Clinic while also working at the funeral home and raising her family. She obtained her insurance license in 2004. Stasia is involved in the St. Mary's church choir and children's activities, is the President of the St. Francis Memorial Hospital Auxiliary, is a member of P.E.O., Christian Mothers and Catholic Daughters.
Bill and Stasia have a family of four children. Miguel graduated from Central Catholic High School in 2003, served six years in the Marines and plans to graduate from UNL in 2012. Jessica graduated from Central Catholic High School in 2005, is a graduate of Chadron State College and plans to finish her degree in dentistry in 2013. Shea graduated from Central Catholic High School in 2008 and is currently attending the University of Nebraska at Omaha with studies in Pre-Mortuary. Emma is a 2011 graduate of Central Catholic High School and plans to attend Chadron State College this fall. She's considering a major in Psychology.
The Schmitt House
In 1917, Matthais and Ottilia Schmitt built the house at 143 South Farragut Street. They lived there with their children Frank, Leo, Bill, Beata, and Frances (Schrum). Matthais and Bill were clothiers and established Schmitt's Clothing, still in business today. Frank became Monsignor Schmitt and was the director of the Boys Town Boys Choir. Leo was the West Point City Treasurer and lived in the house until his death. Beata lived in the house her whole life, and Frances returned to the family home following her husband's death.
In 1984, Beata sold the house to Arlyn and Merna Pierce, who in turn sold the house to Bill and Stasia Stokely in August of 2000. Nearly 100 years after the Schmitt House was built, Bill and Stasia have refinished many of the rooms to resemble the beauty of their original state.