Kent J. Lavene passed away January 26, 2024, in Omaha, Nebraska at the age of 69 years. He was born February 28, 1954, in Lexington, Nebraska to Paul and Dorothy (Bonser) Lavene. He grew up on the family farm just outside of the Village of Bertrand.
Kent attended Bertrand High School, then attended Central Community College in Hastings, earning an associate degree in 1976. Kent attended Kearney State College to receive a bachelor's degree in education and finished with a master's at Kearney in 1990. In 1998, he completed a second master's in counseling from the University of Nebraska in Kearney.
He worked as director of Residents and Greek Life in Kearney and as director of Residential Life Services for the University of Kansas in Lawrence. Most recently he worked as Resident Director, then Judicial Officer, and then in the Student Grant Office at the University of Nebraska in Omaha. Kent was well known for helping countless students in his career. He retired in 2018.
In his youth, Kent worked on the family farm, learned to cook, and was a Boy Scout. In college, he was a summer volunteer at several Boy Scout Camps in Minnesota and Nebraska. In Omaha, he volunteered with PFLAG and Ted E. Bear Hollow.
In 2008 he met Frank J. Ellis, and they joined in a Holy Union ceremony in 2010. After the decision of the Supreme Court, upholding that the Fourteenth Amendment requires all states to grant and recognize same-sex marriages, Kent and Frank were united in marriage in August of 2015.
At home, Kent was passionate about cooking, gardening, and his pets, all named for vacuum cleaners, Hoover, Oreck and Eureka, the cats, and Bissell, Kirby and Dyson, the dogs.
Kent was preceded in death by his parents and brother Darrell Lavene.
He is survived by his husband, Frank Ellis; sisters Sharon (Marlo) Kreutzer and Nancy (Rich) Fowler; brother Ron (Sharon) Lavene; sister-in-law Veronica Lavene; and other family and friends.
A Memorial Visitation will be held Sunday, February 18, from 1-4pm, with a Service of Remembrance at 2:00 pm at Good Shepherd Funeral Home - L Street Chapel.