Weather Forecast

Click for Wauneta, Nebraska Forecast

Publishing of father’s book deepens family memories of him PDF Print E-mail
Written by Wauneta Breeze   
Monday, 27 December 2010 17:36

By Jan Schultz

The Imperial Republican


What better Christmas gift can a family have than their father’s personal experiences and thoughts in print?

That’s what the daughters and grandsons of Lyle Ohrmund are experiencing this holiday season with the publishing of his book, “How The Rest Was Done.”

Lyle died in October, 2006.

To daughters Brenda Cahow of Imperial and Lisa Kerchal of Wauneta it became that much more meaningful when their mother, Norma, was able to hold it in her hands, and read some of it, just before her death Nov. 29. The published book arrived just two days earlier.

The book should be of interest to many in this area, as Ohrmund writes about growing up in the Badlands of South Dakota.

“How The Rest Was Done,” written by Lyle Orhmund, a 30-year brand inspector in this area before his retirement, was recently published by his family. He also ranched in the Nebraska Sandhills. (Imperial Republican illustration)


It concludes with his entry into the service, enlisting at the young age of 17, but the vast majority of the book includes the stories of living in a sodhouse as a youngster, going to town on Saturday nights, dealing with horses and more.

The back cover of the book describes it, saying, “He shares tales of living on the prairie, raising livestock and suffering the trials and tribulations Mother Nature bestowed upon him.”

Brenda said, “It made history come alive for me.”

And for her personally, “It describes how he evolved into who he was.

“You can’t have a better legacy than that,” she said.

Her father’s descriptions of some of FDR’s programs, and the reasoning behind putting them into place during the Depression, are in the book. Some involved the Indian population her father knew so well in South Dakota.

Brenda also believes the book concentrates on his youth because it was written with his four grandsons in mind.

Brenda has one son, Sam, while Lisa has three, Tyrel, Tyler and Tanner.

In the preface, Brenda writes, “He felt it was important for his grandsons and future generations to know where they came from.”

She adds, “Enjoy the remembrances and observations, along with a unique sharing of historical footnotes of a genuine product of the rugged west during a rather difficult period of U.S. history.”

Growing up, Brenda recalls that her dad always seemed to “be scribbling at the dining room table.”

When he finished this particular story, he asked her to type it out from his pages in long-hand.

She did some editing along the way, she said, and had a few copies printed up in book form just for the family.

However, when some cousins visited here and saw it, they wanted copies, as did some of his ranching buddies from the Sandhills.

“So I decided to go ahead and have some more printed,” she said, and has been selling them individually to people who have asked.

It was published by Windcall Publishing of Venango. The photo gracing the cover was taken by Brenda and son, Sam, as they visited the South Dakota Badlands.

A poem, “A Tree (and me),” also written by Ohrmund, concludes the book. It tells of the cycle of life, and became even more poignant now that both parents are gone, she said.

The book is currently on sale at Super Foods, where Brenda works; at The Imperial Republican; and at Southwest Veterinary Services in Wauneta, where Lisa is employed.

“How The Rest Was Done” is just one of three Ohrmund wrote, but is the first to be published.

Another is titled, “Cattle Trails and Other Tales.” The third involves Ohrmund’s experiences in WWII as he served in occupied Italy.