Wayne State Basketball Standout, Dawnn Receives NGF Grant

Wayne State Basketball Standout Dawnn Tucker Receives NGF Grant

As Wayne State basketball fans and Nebraska sports enthusiasts; we know how important it is to give back to our community and see it thrive, especially when we know how hard-working and loving the Nebraska athletes are. 

Today, we are excited to share with you the moving story of one such athlete: Dawnn Tucker. Former Women’s Basketball Wayne State College standout who played for her team in the late 1980s.

Dwann Tucker and family

Wayne State Basketball Star Dawnn Tucker History 

Today, at 58 years old, Dawnn may be known as a dedicated city worker in Pierce, Nebraska, and a loving wife and mother, but her journey began on the basketball courts of Wayne State College.

In the late 1980s, when women’s sports were still fighting for recognition, Dawnn was making waves in the local basketball scene. 

Dawnn was a promising and hard-working team player at Wayne State College. She transferred to Wayne in 1987 to become a junior college women’s basketball star. 

Her arrival heralded a new era for the college’s women’s basketball team. She was a force to be reckoned with, a consistent double-digit scorer and rebounder for her team. 

Her contributions were invaluable, particularly in the NAIA District 11 playoff game against Midland. With Dawnn on the court, the Wildcats didn’t just play; they made history. Her presence helped lead the team to a victorious season.

Nebraska greats foundation Serves Dawnn

Dawnn Tucker Today

But Dawnn’s life story is not just about her achievements on the court. After leaving Wayne State, Dawnn married her best friend and partner, Joe. 

Their journey of love has been an adventure of 35 years and counting, filled with shared laughter, joy, and respect.

Together, they’ve raised two daughters. The happy family made their home in Pierce, Nebraska, where Dawnn has served the city for over 25 years. Her dedication to her work is a reflection of the same spirit she brought to her basketball career.

Dawnn Tucker´s Medical Journey

In March 2022, Dawnn was diagnosed with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), a disease that has marked a new chapter in her life.

ALS is a progressive neurodegenerative condition that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord. 

This condition leads to the loss of muscle control, affecting the ability to speak, eat, and move. However, despite the physical effects, cognitive functions, like intelligence and memory, remain intact.

It is safe to say that this diagnosis was a hard blow for Dawnn and her family, since ALS is not just a medical condition; it’s a life-altering reality that affects facets of everyday life. 

The gradual loss of muscle control means that simple tasks, such as walking, running, or even holding objects, can become increasingly challenging.

But for Dawnn, who once dominated the basketball court with her agility and strength, the effects of ALS were not going to stop her. 

The disease progressively limits mobility, making it difficult to continue with some routine activities, but she has kept active and positive through it all.

Dawnn’s spirit remains unbroken. Her journey with ALS is marked not by defeat but by courage, resilience, and an unyielding will to fight.

NGF Serves Dawnn

How the Nebraska Greats Foundation Served Wayne State Basketball Standout Dawnn Tucker

ALS can be a very tough time, but the good news is that she isn’t alone; not only her family and friends are there to support her, but at the NGF we are committed to making her life easier. 

While Dawnn continued her battle with ALS, we were working to award a grant to help her everyday routine be much smoother.

The grant will be used to install a handicapped-accessible bathroom and a ramp into her home. These modifications are crucial for maintaining Dawnn’s independence and safety as her condition progresses. 

Soon, Dawnn will have a more accessible and adaptable space to continue her life and enjoy her family the way she deserves.

“I am beyond blessed and grateful that the Nebraska Greats Foundation is able to help with an accessible bathroom and a ramp for the front door. These things are going to make my life so much easier as I journey through my battle with ALS. I’m honored to become part of the Nebraska Greats Foundation family! Thank you from the bottom of my Heart for your generosity. You guys are Amazing!” 

Said Dawnn.
Wayne State Basketball wildcats

Wayne State College and The Nebraska Greats Foundation

Dawnn is the second former Wayne State student to receive support from the NGF, and we hope to help many more Wildcat athletes in need of medical assistance. 

For ten years now, the foundation has been serving athletes from the 16 colleges and universities in Nebraska. Our mission is to stand by our athletes, just like we did for Dawnn Tucker in her times of need.

The NGF’s support for Dawnn goes beyond financial aid. By standing with her in her fight against ALS, we´re sending a powerful message of solidarity and community spirit. 

The Nebraska Greats Foundation

We believe that every individual and organization has a role to play in empowering athletes and enriching our community.

The Nebraska Greats Foundation is a non-profit organization that provides financial assistance to former athletes and ex-athletes from Nebraska’s colleges and universities who face medical challenges. 

Thanks to this support, we can alleviate some of the mental health issues that Nebraska athletes are going through during their recovery process.

If you know of an athlete friend or family member who needs access to specific treatments and services, let us know to potentially alleviate some of the stress associated with managing these conditions.

With your help, we can make the Nebraska sports scene a safer place for our community athletes. Wondering how to help? Donate today or reach out to us. Most donations are tax-deductible.

Wayne State Basketball Dawnn Tucker

Nebraska Basketball Star Anton Gill Joins NGF Recipiants

Anton Gill’s Commitment to Nebraska Basketball

As the Executive Director of the Nebraska Greats Foundation, I am constantly reminded of the importance and impact of our work. Today, I have the pleasure of sharing another success story – one that underlines the significance of our mission and the transformative power of the support we provide.

We are thrilled to announce that Anton Gill, a former Husker Basketball standout, has joined the ranks of our beneficiaries. Anton is more than just a recipient; he is a testament to the resilience and spirit of Nebraska Basketball.

Anton Gill’s time as a Husker Basketball player showcased his exceptional skills and dedication to the sport. By joining the ranks of the Nebraska Greats Foundation’s beneficiaries, Anton Gill not only receives support but also becomes an inspiration to aspiring athletes who dream of reaching similar heights.

Anton Gill basketball recipient

A Glimpse into Anton Gill’s Journey

Anton’s journey is a story of talent, perseverance, and determination. During his tenure at Nebraska, he demonstrated exceptional leadership and skill. As a team captain, he played a pivotal role in leading the Huskers to 22 wins in his senior year – a significant achievement that attests to his prowess on the court. He was also a prolific scorer, leading the Huskers with 54 three-point field goals in his senior year.

Beyond Nebraska, Anton continued to pursue his passion for basketball, playing in several foreign countries. However, after a very successful time abroad, last off-season, he encountered health concerns that started getting in the way of his professional basketball career and the quality of his life; unfortunately, these health problems were not covered by insurance. This is where the Nebraska Greats Foundation stepped in.

Anton Gill basketball recipient

The Struggle of Health Problems

Health problems can significantly impact the life of an athlete, both on a physical and emotional level. Physically, health issues can hinder an athlete’s ability to perform at their best, affecting their strength, stamina, and overall athleticism.

On an emotional level, health problems can take a toll on an athlete’s mental well-being. The inability to participate fully in their sport can lead to feelings of disappointment, frustration, and even depression. Athletes may struggle with a sense of loss as they are unable to engage in the activities that bring them joy and purpose.

For the Nebraska Greats Foundation, it is essential to address both issues and guarantee that former athletes receive the help they need to avoid any physical and psychological sequels in the future.

The Huskers Basketball Team

The Huskers basketball team demonstrates a strong commitment to the well-being and success of their student-athletes both on and off the court. With a focus on holistic development, the coaching staff and support personnel prioritize the physical, mental, and emotional welfare of each player. 

They provide resources and guidance to ensure that student-athletes maintain a healthy balance between academics and athletics. The team’s commitment extends beyond the basketball court, fostering an environment where players can thrive academically, socially, and personally.

We recognize and celebrate the hard work the Huskers do with their teams and the amazing support they bring to the basketball community. We feel proud and honored to be able to contribute to the life quality and happiness of his players. 

Anton Gill basketball nebraska

The Role of the Nebraska Greats Foundation

The Nebraska Greats Foundation is a community non-profit dedicated to supporting former Nebraska college and university letter winners facing medical and financial challenges. Our mission is to provide a private-sector solution to the rising healthcare costs that many athletes face after their collegiate careers. 

We believe athletes deserve access to the care and support they need, allowing them to lead healthy and active lives beyond their college sports careers.

As a close-knit sports community, the NGF knows that there are a lot of people in Nebraska willing to give back to those who make this state the amazing place it is today. 

The NGF has been serving former athletes for the past decade, and Anton Gill is the latest addition to our legacy. Anton expressed his gratitude, saying, “I am honored and extremely grateful to be a part of the Nebraska Greats Foundation family. My family and I appreciate all the support as we navigate getting my career back on track.”

Anton joins other illustrious Husker basketball standouts like Larry Florence, Bernard Day, and Ade Dagunduro, who have also benefited from the support of the Nebraska Greats Foundation.

Why Your Contribution Matters

While we celebrate Anton’s journey, we also recognize that there are many more athletes out there who need our help. This is why we need your support. We encourage all former collegiate athletes in Nebraska who might be facing similar challenges to come forward and apply for assistance.

Donating to a non-profit organization like the Nebraska Greats Foundation is an incredibly impactful way to contribute to your community. By supporting this foundation, you are directly helping former college athletes in need who have dedicated their time and talent to representing their schools and communities.

To those of you who believe in our cause and want to make a difference, consider donating to our foundation. Most donations are tax-deductible, and every contribution goes a long way in helping former athletes like Anton Gill overcome their challenges and get back on track.

Let’s continue to honor and assist our “Nebraska Greats” together. Learn more and join us in our mission. Your contribution can change lives, and together, we can ensure that our athletes continue to thrive beyond the field.

Hoibergs Headline the 2023 Tom Dinsdale Auto Celebrity Sports Jamboree Presented By 1st State Bank

Hoibergs Headline the 2023 Tom Dinsdale Auto Celebrity Sports Jamboree Presented By 1st State Bank

The Nebraska Greats Foundation brings a celebrity event this summer to Grand Island’s Riverside Golf Club for the 5th consecutive year.

Thursday night, July 20th, the event will feature dinner, cocktails, auction items, tributes and testimonials to and from recipients served by NGF support.

The Thursday night event is headlined by Husker Men’s Basketball Coach Fred Hoiberg and wife Carol.

Says Hoiberg, “Carol and I are thrilled to be a part of the event in Grand Island in support of the Nebraska Greats Foundation. The NGF does amazing things for athletes and their families and since there is no other organization like it in the country, it’s just another reason there truly is no place like Nebraska.”

To date, The NGF has provided life-changing assistance to men and women former letterwinners at 12 of Nebraska’s 16 4-year colleges and universities including three former Husker Basketball standouts Bernard Day, Larry Florence and Ade Dagundaro.

Click here for a complete list of Nebraska Greats Foundation recipients.

On Friday, July 21st college athletes will serve as celebrity “captains” for area golfers for a round on the course at Riverside to benefit NGF recipients.

More information and an event schedule will be available later this spring.

The Nebraska Greats Foundation Assists a Former Husker Football Player

The Nebraska Greats Foundation Assists a Former Husker Football Player

The Nebraska Greats Foundation Assists a Former Husker Football Player

The Nebraska Greats Foundation (501C-3 non profit) www.negreats.org which serves former letter winners from Nebraska’s 4-year colleges and universities who face medical and financial challenges, proudly announces a grant for former Husker football letter winner Paul Kastl.

The NGF is assisting Paul with past due medical expenses.

Kastl, who lettered at Nebraska from 1998-2002, was a walk-on running back after a standout HS career at Lincoln Pius X.

Says Kastl, “I’d like to say that I’m honored and blessed to have been introduced to the NE Greats foundation and their amazing staff. They have come to my side in a great time of need. I cannot thank them enough.”

International Masters Swimmer and former Husker served by NGF

International Masters Swimmer and former Husker served by NGF

The Nebraska Greats Foundation, 501C-3 nonprofit (www.negreats.org) which aids current and former Nebraska athletes in need has provided a grant to Keefe Lodwig, a former All Big 8 swimming champion from UNL.

Lodwig, who starred at Omaha Benson High School in the 1960’s has been diagnosed with Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, a degenerative neurological disease that progressively robs its victims of motor skills. It is commonly known as ALS or “Lou Gehrig’s disease.”

While an accomplished swimmer in his youth, Lodwig shined the most as one of the world’s top Master’s Swimmers. He competed globally, setting records, and capturing gold medals well into his 70’s.

ALS victims require constant medical care. The NGF is assisting Lodwig with needs as the disease progresses.

“I feel lucky that I was able to be an athlete for Nebraska and I am very grateful for the help I am receiving from the Nebraska Greats Foundation.” Says Lodwig.

Donations to the NGF are tax deductible and can be made online at www.negreats.org/giving

Nebraska Greats Foundation Comes Through for Another Small College Nebraska Athlete

Nebraska Greats Foundation Comes Through for Another Small College Nebraska Athlete

The Nebraska Greats Foundation, 501C-3 nonprofit (www.negreats.org) which aids current and former Nebraska athletes in need has provided a grant to Keven Marques, a freshman Midfielder from Ribeirao Preto, Brazil

Keven was admitted to a local hospital in August complaining of severe abdominal pain and severe vomiting. After a series of tests and other procedures, doctors located the cause of the illness and began treatment. Keven made a full recovery.

The Nebraska Greats Foundation assisted Keven, who is largely funding his own education with funds to cover outstanding medical expenses.
“I am very grateful for all the help and assistance provided by the Nebraska Greats Foundation. I appreciate and recognize the great work they do in helping people and families who need or have needed help, just like me.” Said Marques.

To learn more about the mission of the NGF or provide tax deductible assistance to athletes in need, please visit www.negreats.org

The Nebraska Greats Foundation Supports a York College Soccer Player

The Nebraska Greats Foundation Supports a York College Soccer Player

The Nebraska Greats Foundation, which aids current and former Nebraska college or university athletes has provided a grant to Carlos Ortega a sophomore Midfielder from York College.  Carlos is originally from Margarita Island, Venezuela.

Carlos applied for a grant to assist him with medical bills stemming from an injury he suffered while competing.  The NGF provided funds to a provider for services not covered by insurance.

Said Carlos “I want to thank the Nebraska Greats Foundation for all your help and support.  I truly appreciate what the NGF does for athletes in need.  It will allow me to stay in school to continue competing and getting a college education.”

The NGF a 501C-3 non profit www.negreats.org seeks applications from any former letter winning athlete who may have a medical need and a financial challenge.   The NGF has provided over $500,000 in qualified grants since its founding in 2014.

Doane College baseball alum, Concordia football star and former Husker basketball player are the latest recipients of assistance from the Nebraska Greats Foundation

Doane College baseball alum, Concordia football star and former Husker basketball player are the latest recipients of assistance from the Nebraska Greats Foundation

Doane College baseball alum, Concordia football star and former Husker basketball player are the latest recipients of assistance from the Nebraska Greats Foundation

The Nebraska Greats Foundation (501C-3 nonprofit) www.negreats.org which serves former athletes from Nebraska’s 4-year colleges and universities who face medical and financial challenges, announces life changing grants to three in-need former college sports heroes.

Jeremy Fossum, of Bellevue, NE (Doane/Baseball) was diagnosed with an operable brain tumor. Beyond the age when he could be covered by his family health insurance, Jeremy was saddled with sizable expense from the operation and associated care. The burden was made worse by significant student loan debt as he pursues a career in physical therapy. Said Fossum, “Finding out about the tumor, I had no thoughts about the cost but then when the bills started to arrive, I became very concerned. I wasn’t sure I would have any way to pay for the health care. Glory to God, He changed my life through the NGF.”

Gerald Morris (Concordia/Football) was seriously injured as a passenger in a spring automobile accident in Utah.His injuries required extensive surgery, rehabilitation and hospital stays. “The Nebraska Greats is a god-send to Gerald and his family. What an incredible, caring organization that literally changes peoples lives.” Said Concordia football coach Patrick Daberkow.”

Larry Florence (UNL/Basketball), a past NGF recipient continues his valiant fight against Multiple Myeloma. His grant will assist with travel to and from treatments, hospital stays and care.