Thelma Florence [Kirby] and Clark Roland Gustin

Not family, just friends. Thelma Kirby [1903-1980] and Clark Gustin [1903-1994] were at the University of Nebraska at the same time as my dad, Ozro Dean. Since they lived in Lincoln they also knew my aunt Marge's family.

Thelma grew up in Beatrice, Gage County NE, daughter of Mary Hooper [1879-1923] and Robert Lincoln Kirby [1870-1954]. He was salesman for Dempster Manufacturing in Beatrice. Their most famous product was the windmill water pump which they still make. In 1930 she was living with grandmother Florence C. Mayberry [1862] at Lincoln where she worked as secretary at the phone company.

Clark was a building contractor in 1930, son of Lucy J [1874-NE] and Edward N. Gustin [1873-WI], a real estate salesman in Elmwood, Cass County NE and later Lincoln. Clark was member of the Delian Union at the University since 1922, the Singer Swinger Squaredance Club and active in Trinity Methodist events.

College days at NU, Lincoln, 1930

Clark's NU graduation picture

Ozro Dean and Clark Gustin; Ruth Newcomer [Ozro's college girlfriend] and Thelma Kirby at NU

Thelma and Clark; Ozro in his NU Band uniform and Thelma with her new 1929 Ford Model A.

After graduation, Clark took Ozro in his '24 Super 6 Hudson on a trip to southern California. Just after arriving at Long Beach, they found themselves at the epicenter of a 6.3 magnitude earthquake, on March 10, 1933. They decided to get back to Lincoln. Their first person accounts and photos were printed in the April 2 Sunday edition of the Lincoln Star and Journal (section C page 4).

This was not the last trip they made together. Clark and Thelma joined with Ozro and Mabel for a 1939 honeymoon trip to California.

Thelma, Clark, Ozro and Mabel, Christmas 1938 planning the honeymoon.

The honeymoon was very successful. Travel included Yellowstone NP, the San Francisco Exposition, and San Diego Balboa Park.

Clark wrote a number of books including "How to Banish Your Poverty". One of his points was to not make guests TOO comfortable. He put his unique brand of humor into all his works. The only one I can remember was his "Plays, Short and Humorous for Clubs, Schools, Churches...." which is listed on, first published in 1944 and reprinted 1966 by Lytle Press.