In Memory

Gerald G. Pabst VIEW PROFILE

April 2, 1937 - Aug 26, 2016

Of Omaha. Jerry was born in Colby, KS on April 2, 1937 to the late Herman and Lucille Pabst. In addition to his parents he was preceded in death by his partner, Bill Bures. Jerry is survived by his brother, Don Pabst (Karen); nieces, Tami Johnson (Jim) and Staci Pabst; nephews, Tod Pabst and Shawn Pabst (Kirsten); great nieces, great nephews, a host of other family and friends and extended family, Corey Poulsen.

MEMORIAL RECEPTION 6pm on Wednesday, September 7, 2016 at the Lauritzen Gardens, 100 Bancroft Street, Omaha. Memorials are suggested to Lauritzen Gardens. Private Inurnment. HOY - KILNOSKI FUNERAL HOME AND CREMATORY 1221 N. 16th St., Council Bluffs IA 51501 712-256-9988

District art coordinator Jerry Pabst, 79, made advocating for youths his top priority

By Tess Williams / World-Herald staff writer


Gerald “Jerry” Pabst never stopped to take a break.

He worked tirelessly to provide quality art courses to students in the Omaha Public Schools during his 31 years as district art coordinator. He occupied his weekends by hosting auctions and later opening Collector’s Choice Estate Sales 22 years ago.

“He was smart and knowledgeable about so many things,” niece Tami Johnson said. “He didn’t seem old. ... He was someone that knew everybody and had an interesting story about everything.”

Pabst, 79, died Friday after being diagnosed with esophageal cancer in May.

He grew up in Colby, Kansas, where he graduated high school in 1955. He attended Kansas State University for his undergraduate degree and obtained a master’s degree from Fort Hays State University.

After graduating, Pabst moved to Omaha, where he spent four years teaching art in the Omaha Public Schools. He was then promoted to district art coordinator.

He helped introduce discipline-based teaching to the art program in 1986 with the help of grant money from the Getty Center. The style integrated art history into regular art courses for students from kindergarten to high school. He also advocated for students to receive more time for art classes each week.

Pabst helped to create engaging projects for students, including painting construction boards that were displayed downtown and designing billboards that were featured throughout Omaha.

“He enjoyed being at school with the kids and getting their interest up about art,” Johnson said.

On weekends, Pabst and late longtime partner Bill Bures would hold estate sales. They purchased the former Center Theater 22 years ago and started their business, Collector’s Choice Estate Sales.

“Working was what he loved to do,” said Corey Poulsen, longtime Collector’s Choice employee and friend. “The estate sale business was his hobby. When he was still teaching he would do sales on the side.”

Family and friends say he could be found at the shop every day. He made it to every sale except the most recent two as his health declined.

Pabst grew up around horses and loved them. He enjoyed cooking and gardening. His garden was featured in the Meyer Children’s Rehabilitation Institute garden walk in 1988.

Besides Johnson, he is survived by brother Don Pabst, niece Staci Pabst, and nephews Tod Pabst and Shawn Pabst.

A memorial service will be held at 6 p.m. Wednesday at Lauritzen Gardens, 100 Bancroft St.

Click here to see Gerald G.'s last Profile entry.