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July 25, 2023

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Colleen Ernesti, 73, of West Point, died Tuesday, July 25, 2023 at CHI Health Creighton University Medical Center – Bergan Mercy in Omaha.  Funeral Mass will be 10:30am on Tuesday, August 1 at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in West Point with Rev. James Weeder as celebrant.  Burial will be at St. Michael’s Cemetery with lunch following at the GACC Cafeteria. Visitation will be Monday from 5:00pm to 7:00pm with a Catholic Daughters and Christian Mothers Rosary at 7:00pm at St. Mary’s Catholic Church.  Memorials may be made to the GACC Endowments or St. Michael’s Cemetery.  Arrangements by Stokely Funeral Home.

Colleen was born on February 23, 1950, to Joseph and Catherine (Duffy) Philbin in Omaha.  She attended St. Mary’s Catholic School in Bellevue and graduated from Archbishop Ryan High School in 1968.  Colleen furthered her studies at Creighton University where she earned her Bachelor of Science Degree in Mathematics.  It was here that she met fellow mathematics major and future husband, Robert Ernesti.  On August 4, 1973, the two were united in marriage at St. Peter’s Catholic Church in Omaha.  The couple taught in Omaha for three years before moving to West Point where they started their family.  After taking on the role of a devoted stay-at-home mother for many years, Colleen served as circulation manager of the West Point News until her retirement in 2015.

Colleen was a member of St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Christian Mothers, and Catholic Daughters.  She was a woman of intelligence, with a resolute personality that reflected her proud Irish heritage. One of her many acts of volunteerism was teaching local GED classes for decades. Colleen found joy in the pages of a well-written book, the intricate art of cross-stitching, and cheering for the Chicago White Sox and Creighton Bluejays. Gathering with friends in card club and engaging in conversations over a warm cup of coffee brought her immense happiness.

Colleen is survived by her husband, Robert; daughter, Molly (Ben) Bishop of Forest, VA; sons, Tim (Una) of Sioux City, IA, Sean (Erin) and Terry both of Kansas City, MO; grandchildren, Noah and Sophie Bishop and Luka, Maria, and Colin Ernesti; sisters, Mary Jo Rosales of Ralston and Katie (Steve Jackson) Philbin of Bellevue; brothers, Phil (Dawn) of Birmingham, AL and Will (Betsy) of Omaha; and brothers-in-law, Paul Sheckler and Casey Tubbs.  Colleen is preceded in death by her parents; siblings, Eileen Cottrell, Bridget Tubbs, Nora Sheckler, and Joe Pat Philbin.