FC: Pete Graff | Memories
1: From the past and present officers, staff and directors of McCook National Bank
2: "The great use of life is to spend it for something that will outlast it."
3: I must admit I never planned to come back to McCook after graduating from Kearney State College and getting my CPA certification. However, the Lord works in mysterious ways, and a failed relationship led me back to McCook and MNB and I have been so blessed that it did. I have had a unique experience in that my boss has also been my Dad these last 30 years (actually he has been my Dad these last 56 years). Obviously as a Dad he has been my hero, but this memory book is about my experiences with him at MNB. During these 30 years, he has been an incredible mentor. What I most appreciate about Dad is that he has given me and the MNB team the ability to manage our institution in our own way. Although we have held to the strong culture of the institution and what Mary Brady and Pat Walsh intended in founding MNB, he has allowed us to create our own legacy at MNB. I know at times he probably felt like we were off in the wrong direction, but he always gave us support in what we were undertaking. That confidence is what has made MNB so special over these last several years. One constant I do know is that Pete Graff’s influence will continue to guide us at MNB over the next several decades. Although the next generation of MNB bankers will not have the same day-to-day interaction with Pete, the foundation he has created over his 55+ years here will always guide this next generation. His commitment to the staff, our families and our communities will forever be felt as we continue to move forward in creating a legacy he will be proud of here at MNB. -Mark Graff
4: “Put your heart, mind and soul into even your smallest acts....
5: ...this is the secret of success."
6: Pete, I remember walking into McCook National Bank over 40 years ago for the first time for a job interview. I was nervous, anxious, and very scared at the beginning of the interview. A few minutes into the interview, Pete made me feel at ease and comfortable. The interview went especially well because I was hired on the spot. While working for Pete, he was a professional, an educator, and above all a friend. I can't think of one story because there are many stories about Pete. I will never ever forget the lessons that Pete has taught me throughout the years. -Dixie Lorentz
7: “As we reflect on days gone by, we learn that it’s the shared moments and simple pleasures that matter most of all.”
9: My most memorable stories of Pete Graff are stories other people have mentioned to me over the years as I was waiting on them. They were stories of what I consider one of the most admirable individuals I have ever had the pleasure to know. This is a man that never wanted to bring attention to himself. One couple told the story that while Pete was serving on the Hospital Board years ago that someone had struck up a conversation with him asking where he worked. He replied that he worked for McCook National Bank and his position involved maintenance around the bank, like taking out the garbage, etc. Later that same couple was visiting with someone else and mentioned Pete’s conversation to them. The couple laughed, ”Work for McCook National Bank? He owns the bank!" The couple couldn’t believe it because Pete was so sincere with his words. On another occasion the presidents of the banks here in McCook were to meet with Russ Kugler on a project. When each of the presidents came in, the receptionist knew right away she was probably facing one of those presidents. But when Pete came in, she thought he was a customer that would need to come back another day to see Russ; once again, he always chose to be just “One of Us.” On many occasions, my customers have made the same statement over and over, "If it wasn’t for Pete Graff, I would not be where I am today!" I know that statement to be true because my father-in-law, John Bauer, Jr., has told me on more than one occasion that no other bank would talk to him about starting his own farming operation besides Pete Graff. I am really thankful for that one; otherwise, my husband would probably not be doing what he has always loved to do...farm. Thanks, Pete! I had the privilege to sit across the bank from Pete for many years as the receptionist; this is a man that always had time for whoever asked of his time. What I did notice is that for those that were less fortunate, he always seemed to have a little extra time. Happy 90th Birthday and God Bless. -Kim Bauer
11: Happy 90th Birthday! I could not have wished for a better place of employment over the last 21 years! The family atmosphere and community involvement could never be matched elsewhere! Pete has always had a special place in my heart, he reminds me so much of my father, a man of few words with a heart of gold! I have always been humbled by a simple good morning, with a pat on the back, or enjoying a bag of popcorn with you while watching a ball game! -Kelli Zwickle
13: How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.
14: One of my memories of Pete will always be of how smart he is and the knowledge he can retain. Escrows can be challenging, especially when events, people, and conditions date back way before I even had kids. Anytime I went to Pete, he could give me all the information I needed, no matter how long ago it was. I guess today, I would call him “MNB’s Google." -Cindy Roberts
15: Some of the fondest memories I have of Pete over the years are the stories customers have related to me of how “If it wasn’t for Pete Graff, they would not have been able to pursue the venture or dream they had or in some cases just been able to survive financially.” Loans were made with just a handshake and a nod and an understanding that he believed in them, and for some this was all they needed. Pete’s quiet demeanor and unassuming attitude is what makes him a great man and leader, and I am truly thankful to have worked for him all these years. One of the traits I enjoy most about Pete is his “chuckle.” It brings a smile to my face each time I hear it. - Kim Baumbach
16: Pete, Over the past year, I have had the pleasure of spending more time with you in the renovated office area. You are a caring, quiet man with a smile and respect for all of us. It is an honor working for you. Happy Birthday!! -Angela Wagner | Pete, Happy 90th Birthday! It has been such a pleasure working with you over the years. Your dedication to the bank, your customers, and employees is commendable. You have a way of making everyone feel they are important. Always thinking of others. Just one example: I remember one winter you went out and cleaned off everyone’s windshield in the parking lot during a snow storm. You are a very special person! -Kristi Novak
17: Pete, I still remember the first time I met you while I was working for the McCook Industrial Development Corporation (before the MEDC) and you were on the Board. I remember the quiet, stable and strong presence you brought to every meeting. You never said much, but everyone (including Russ Kugler and Denny Fargen!) sat up and listened whenever you spoke. It was an amazing lesson to me of what real leadership is like. I knew that if I wanted to work at the best place in McCook that I would need to find a position at McCook National Bank. I was fortunate for that to happen in 1996, and it has been my pleasure ever since to be part of your great bank. When I tell someone where I work, it is with pride and gratitude because of the culture of commitment, excellence and service that you have instilled in MNB and in all of us. McCook is a better community because of you, Pete, and we are better persons because of you as well. Happy birthday! -Peggy Been
20: Why am I in banking? As a very young kid (back in the late 60’s and early 70’s), I would come into McCook National Bank with my dad, Vernon Esch. At times, he would need to borrow some money for operations of his welding shop. I was always overwhelmed by “how smart must Pete be?” He had the ability to talk to my dad across the desk, answer a telephone call, run the manual typewriter, look at transactions on ledger cards (later on a green-screen dummy terminal), and read a stack of Wall Street Journal newspapers that started on the floor and rose up above the desk level—all seemingly at the same time. Now that is smart! As I worked in my Dad’s welding shop my teenage years, the working conditions were not very glamorous at times. Such as those days when the temperature was over 100 degrees and the sweat beads were rolling off my face underneath the welding helmet. Those days told me that I should consider getting a college education and finding another way to make a living. I would reflect back on how smart Pete was and set my goals to be a banker. Well, here I am at age 50. I’m a banker, but I’m not nearly as smart as Pete Graff and I’ve never read that stack of Wall Street Journals! I do read a WSJ article occasionally on my smart phone. One more thought about what I’ve learned from Pete Graff. That life lesson is: how to be humble. I won’t forget this lesson. My life has been blessed. The opportunity that Pete Graff gave me to work full-time upon graduation in May 1985 was a blessing. The opportunity gave me a chance to further form a relationship with a girl, Mary, who became my wife. To this marriage has been born two children, Marisa and Brady. Yes, my life has been blessed. Thanks Pete! -Brian Esch
21: "We do not remember days; we remember moments."
22: I’ve always thought of Pete as the Grandpa of the bank. With all the customers that still come in and ask for advice from him, he sits back and shares his wisdom with everyone. He’s gentle and kind and knows all our names. He always keeps track of our accomplishments and our families. He always kept track of Megan and what she was doing in school and sports and made a point of letting me know he was proud of her. I always enjoyed our little visits about various things. I’ve known the Graff/Thomas family for a long time and went to school with several of the kids. They are all fun to talk to, and I enjoy catching up with them and their families. Family is important to the Graff/Thomas crew, and that carries on to the Bank and our family here. It is a great place to work and feels like you belong to a great group of people. This all stems back from the patriarch, Pete. Happy Birthday Pete!!! We love you! -Diane (Slatt) Ruppert
23: On cold winter days when the snow was coming down and you finally drug yourself outside to start your car, you would find Peter had been out and swept the snow off all the employees' cars. Just one of the many little things Pete would think to do for others. -Melissa Stritt | “How far you go in life depends on your being tender with the young, compassionate with the aged, sympathetic with the striving, and tolerant of the weak and strong. Because someday in your life you will have been all of these.”
27: Happy 90th Birthday Pete! While I haven’t had a chance to get to know you well, I have witnessed your kindness and generosity in many ways. I am grateful for the opportunity to work for a financial institution founded on integrity and strong ethics, and I know you are a huge contributor to this foundation. You have left an amazing legacy which is evident in your family, the bank and our communities... this is something you and your family can be very proud of! -Marci Sis
29: In December 1972, Dennis Utter and you waited until midnight to meet with me after your bank Christmas Party about a job at McCook National Bank. We were headed to the Tilden and Neligh area for Christmas, and Dennis made the arrangements for us to stop on the way from Liberal, Kansas. I had just returned from a meeting in Kansas City, and the drive from Liberal to McCook had us arrive around midnight. Our boys, Jay and Tim, kept asking us when we would go back home to McCook. We were all excited when we received a phone call that I could go to work at the Bank. It has been a real pleasure to have worked for over forty-plus years at the Bank. Happy 90th Birthday and have a good day with family and friends. THANK YOU. -Jim, Marlene, Jay & Tim Hamill | “As we reflect on days gone by, we learn that it’s the shared moments and simple pleasures that matter most of all.”
30: I remember one cold snowy/stormy day when I left work, the snow had been cleared from my car windows. I found out that Pete had gone out and cleared the windows of all the cars that were still in the parking lot. I don’t know how many bosses would do that for their employees. Pete is one of a kind. - Tammie Hilker
31: Pete, I have had the pleasure of working at McCook National Bank for over 14 years, and during this time I have come to see you as the quiet force at MNB. You are reliable and so dedicated, and the most humble person I know. I am privileged and honored to work for, and with you. Happy 90th birthday Pete! You are one of a kind!! - Sherri Stang | “Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions!” -Dalai Lama
32: Pete Graff hired me to work at McCook National Bank with some encouragement from Jim Hamill. I started on 8/2/80 in the bookkeeping department. During the 29+ years I worked there, I worked in bookkeeping, teller line, new accounts and the loan department. During this time, I always felt I had total support from Pete. One thing for sure, if an employee was loyal to MNB, Pete was loyal to that employee. He was always quiet, but you knew that he was very aware of everything that happened in the bank. I remember one part-time employee that came to work with a rather short skirt. When she walked by Pete’s office, he actually did a double take. For someone who seldom showed much emotion, this was really funny. One of his amazing qualities was that he never turned his back on anyone who came into the bank and often took time out of his busy day to listen or visit with whoever stopped by his office. Pete Graff is MNB and I miss seeing him daily. However, in the last three years, I have seen Pete and Dolores at many baseball and basketball games as they support their grandchildren. I just always felt everything was under control when Pete was in his office. He seldom was out of his office, and if so, was usually at a bank meeting somewhere. Pete loved working at the bank—it was his life. He was a good friend to me and I have great memories of my time at MNB. I feel very lucky to have worked at McCook National Bank and to know Pete Graff, a special person. I’m confident he passed his wisdom and knowledge to the next generation of those in charge of MNB. -K.C. Eckhardt
33: Pete, I just want to wish you a very Happy 90th Birthday. We have known each other for many years and over the years, I have learned countless valuable lessons from you, but mostly your unending kind heart. You have never wanted to receive any recognition for any of the kind things you have done. I can remember when I first came to the bank in 1988, and for many years following then, was the common theme that I heard from nearly everyone that I met about how you in some way or another had helped them. You have been a quiet pillar to this community and an inspiration to my life. I hope your health allows you back to the bank from time to time, as I miss your whistle as you come in the back door and when I ask how you are doing, your answer always is “I can’t complain." Hope you have a very special 90th birthday. -Randy Korgan & Family
35: I was 19 when I first approached Pete Graff about a job at MNB. I had heard there was an opening and thought it would be “fun”. I had no experience and didn’t really have a clue what a bookkeeper would do in a bank. After the first meeting with Pete, he told me to come back in a week. I did. When I returned the next week, he told me that he was afraid he would hire me and train me only to have me go to work for the banker in Indianola, Louie Carney. I assured him with all the youthful exuberance I could muster that this would not happen. Again, he told me to come back in a week. Not getting the hint that he really did not want to hire me but was too nice to say no, I returned dutifully in a week. He finally hired me. Thus Pete learned that you need to be careful what you wish for! He still can’t get rid of me. Over the years, Pete has quietly taught me not only how to be a banker but also that actions speak louder than words, silence is more powerful than yelling, and all people deserve a chance no matter how rich or poor. I have grown to love and respect Pete almost like a Dad. Thanks and Happy 90th Birthday, Pete! -Lisa Felker
38: Pete, Like most people in our community, I’ve heard countless good stories about the Graff Family and the outstanding reputation of McCook National Bank. But it wasn’t until a few years ago when I joined the MNB team myself that I truly began to understand the depth and breadth of these stories. While I’ve never had the chance to get to know you well or work alongside you myself, I’ve had the privilege of hearing many stories from your co-workers, family, customers and friends about your business instincts, unwavering work ethic and steadfast leadership. Your dedication to your family, the bank and our community is remarkable. Happy 90th Birthday, Pete! -Shelby Haag
39: Pete, For as long as I can remember, McCook National Bank = Pete Graff and vice versa. That thought has always meant to me that things were good if you dealt with MNB/Pete. Looking back now, I know things were tight at many different times, but never did I notice or remember that MNB/Pete would not help or be there to help. It is not one thing, event, or experience in particular that stands out in my mind, but a mass of memories that continues to grow. Congratulations on your 90th birthday, -Matt Tiller
40: Shortly after we were married, my wife, Stacey, was very excited to learn that Pete was a Notre Dame fan. Coming from a large Irish Catholic family, her siblings, aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews all bleed blue and gold, but there didn’t seem to be any other Notre Dame fans in this area. Every time Stacey sees Pete, she enjoys talking Notre Dame football with him and knowing that she has another fellow fan in town. -Korey Burkert
41: Happy Birthday Pete! Wow---what a man you are! My relationship with you over the past ten+ years has meant a great deal to me. Personally...you are very friendly, polite, caring, fun loving, understanding, and family oriented. Professionally...you are down to earth, knowledgeable, highly respected, prompt, philanthropic, well known,experienced, and intuitively analytical. It is my honor to know you and to be your friend. Have a mighty fine Birthday! -Bill Zahl
42: It's the little things that make life beautiful.
43: Good times are even better when they are shared.
46: I remember the day after the bank fire, when Pete was in his office (now Brian’s), cleaning out his stacks of magazines. He was down on one knee next to his desk and looked up at the lobby, with all of us working to clean up. The look on his face reminded me of a kid who had lost his best friend. I also remember how hard both he and Dolores worked to get the bank cleaned up so that we could open the doors for business. There was also a time during the farm crisis in the '80's when my office was behind Pete’s, and I could see into the hall closet when the door was partially open. There had been several reports of farmers “unhappy” with their bankers, including one in Iowa who shot his banker. One Monday I spotted a shotgun propped up in the hall closet, and I asked Pete if he was arming the staff, and if he would give me a warning when he saw someone enter the lobby carrying a firearm, so that I could duck. He laughed at me and said that the wall between us was 2 bricks thick. He thought I would be safe. There was also the time when Larry and I went in to talk to Pete about some personal finances and Pete had an article in one of his magazines on the topic. Of the multiple stacks of a 100 or so magazines, not only did he know which stack the magazine was in, but about how far down the stack it was and pulled it out for us to read. He had a better filing system than a file cabinet! -Velda Ferguson
47: Congratulations on your 90th Birthday! It is great to be associated with such great people as you. I have enjoyed knowing you, and I hope you don’t mind that I always asked you if you were cheating at Old Sol. You never did answer -- just grinned. Ha! Hope you have a great Birthday. -Yvonne West | Congratulations on this amazing milestone! Wishing you all of life's best as you celebrate your 90th. You have touched so many lives by your thoughtful deeds. HAPPY 90th BIRTHDAY, PETE! -Kari Clausen | The first thing that comes to mind is that every morning Pete would walk in and say good morning to every employee that he saw, and he would call them by name. It was such a wonderful way to start the day. -Terri Skolout
48: "Beautiful memories tell our story...
49: ...and wrap themselves in ribbons of the heart."
51: Pete, Happy 90th Birthday! Connie and I wish you the best in celebrating your special day with your family. I want to especially thank you for the help and encouragement you provided me in the establishment of my lab business. I began the business in Grant in 1975 after we had moved back from Chico, California where I had been teaching soil science classes at California State University-Chico. In 1976, an opportunity arose to join Technical Consultants in McCook and provide laboratory testing services for Ag Tech Co. I decided to make the move and began providing lab services for Ag Tech consultants, fertilizer and feed dealers, other crop consultants, feedlot nutritionists, and farmers in September 1976. In October 1978, Technical Consultants dissolved and I made a decision to run the laboratory on my own. In order to do this, I needed a loan so went to your office to visit with you. I told you how much I needed and you made the loan before I left. This is the first time I met you. Much to my surprise, I was able to pay off the loan by the end of my fiscal year which was August 31, 1979. I sold my business on November 1, 2007 to Kevin and Christine Grooms. Kevin had been my laboratory manager for approximately 20 years. At the time I sold the business, we had 12-13 fulltime employees and hired several part time employees during the busy season. I remember you often asked me how the feed testing business was going. It was always good and I sensed that the farmers and ranchers always valued the test results when making decisions regarding feeding their livestock. In addition to offering soil and feed testing services, we expanding our analytical capabilities to include the testing of water, fertilizer, manure, plant, wastewater, and other miscellaneous samples. Thanks again for the way you helped shape my professional help. Without your financial assistance and encouragement, I probably would have had a different professional career. Connie and I have enjoyed living in McCook and raising our family here. Enjoy your day and THANK YOU. Bob and Connie Olsen
52: I started working at McCook National Bank on 1-1-60 and retired on 12-31-79. I never regretted working at MNB and have definite respect for Pete Graff. Pete was a great boss, and I have good memories of my time there. He was very loyal to his employees. I remember after Mark’s mother died, he wouldn’t stay with his grandmother who came to stay with the family, so Pete brought Mark to work with him. Happy Birthday, Pete! -Marjorie Phelps
53: Pete, Happy Birthday! I want to add that I am honored to say that I work at McCook National Bank, a business that Mary Brady asked the one person whom I believe she knew would take the reins and carry on for the community. And for that I thank you, because I feel I work at one of the BEST places in the area. One that makes you feel like family. You are willing to go that extra mile to do what you can for the bank and the community because you (an employee) follow by example, and you have set the standard where it is easy and rewarding. Thank you, Pete! -Helen Hackney | Pete, Thanks for all the memories for the past 25 years of my working with you at MNB. Your warm greetings and smile each morning always starts my day out right. Have a great 90th birthday. -Marlys Sitzman
55: Pete, Every time I think of you, I am reminded of an old proverb that reads: “He who knows and knows that he knows is wise, follow him.” Without question you are known as a great leader, who took the McCook National Bank through the dry 50’s and the economic tough times of the 80’s. You are known as a lender who looked to find ways to stay with those credit customers that were struggling, rather than ways to collect them. I feel very fortunate to have known you from 1968 to date, and to have worked with you from 1990 to 2007. Best wishes to you in the next decade. -John E. Hanson
58: Pete, One of my favorite memories of you as my neighbor for many years is when we each tried to be the first one out in the morning following an overnight snowfall, so we could help the other out by scooping at least some of their walks. A similar thing occurred when we mowed; the property line between us sure got mowed a lot. You and Dolores were great neighbors, and we would welcome you back to the West 6th neighborhood any time. -Leon Kuhlen
59: I just started working in the Main Bank on January 14th of this year, but every afternoon, Pete comes up to the reception desk to get the McCook Daily Gazette to read. Some days he will take it to his office, but other days he will sit down there and read the paper. When I hand it to him, he always says, “Thank you, dear.” Even though I don’t know him that well, this has always made me feel special and appreciated. -Dawn Foster | Happy Birthday Pete! Thank You for all of the help and guidance through the years. -Jim Gohl
60: Pete, My best wishes to you on your 90th birthday. The time I spent at McCook National Bank working for you was a gratifying experience. An outstanding memory was the evening I sat with you at a McCook Equity annual meeting, and you asked me to come to the bank to visit about an opening at the bank. Wishing you a happy birthday! -Angus Garey
62: My first memory of Pete was visiting with him when I was hired. I remember how he encouraged me with my career. He told me how he had worked for the FDIC as an examiner. I also remember him telling me about how his son, Mark, would be coming to work at McCook National Bank very soon. This was August, and Mark eventually did make it here from Kansas in November, a few months later. I don’t think his dad knew when he would be coming to work. I am sure he was very glad that he did. When I worked in the loan department, I had the privilege of typing loan papers for Pete. People just felt comfortable working with him. He has always enjoyed helping and visiting with customers. Pete has never seen a stranger and is always willing to go the extra step to help people in need. He made a commitment to McCook National Bank, and we should all be inspired by his leadership. My family is very blessed to have gotten to know Pete and his family. He has been a special part of our lives. I have seen a lot of changes in the bank through the years, but Pete has always stayed the same, being the kind, compassionate person that he is. Happy 90th Birthday, Pete. I have enjoyed working with you through the years. May God Bless You. With Love and Prayers, -Mary L. Esch
63: Pete, I’ve often wished I could just sit and listen to you talk. Whether it’s a business discussion or a conversation about life in general, I would love to soak in all of your wisdom and knowledge. You are truly an inspiration. Happy Birthday, Pete! -Joy Williams
64: I remember when I interviewed with the bank in 1994. The board room table was surrounded by officers, including Pete Graff. Pete really didn’t say too much during the interview, but I was fortunate to get hired by MNB. Since that time, I have come to realize that Pete is a man of few words, but when Pete talks you need to listen. Thanks, Pete. -Jamey Hansen
68: I was in Lincoln in November for an investment conference and Pete had been appointed to a leadership post with the banking department, which was just down the skywalk from the Cornhusker Hotel, so I thought I would stop over during a break and visit with Pete in his new office. I was quick to share what the economists had said at the meeting and the views of a few consultants. After some time of catching up and visiting about the conference, his new office, and things back home at the bank, he turned and asked me, “Where is your coat?” I immediately felt about 10 years old. I told him it was nice out, and I had not worn one. He scolded me a little as if I were his own family and told me to make sure I had it for the drive home. It dawned on me that day that not everyone gets to work for a man that treats everyone as his own family! In the early days of my marriage and family, I would often put off some tasks until the last minute. Many times those tasks dealt with issues around the house. One such time, I found myself in good company. On my first Christmas Eve as a new father, I went out to start shopping for my 3-month old son and my wife. I had been to about every store in McCook. I had not yet found those perfect gifts. At about 3:00 p.m., I went into Wheeler’s (now Orschlen’s). I know, it was a reach to think that I would find a 3-month old son’s gift there -- let alone my wife’s gift. While walking an aisle, I bumped into Pete. He had a cart piled full of items and a pair of coveralls hanging over his shoulder. I told him I was Christmas shopping, and he said he was, too. We both kind of laughed about shopping so late in the season. I mentioned I was struggling finding the perfect first gift and was even at a bigger loss on finding my wife something. He said something I still think of every Christmas, “Gifts aren’t important. Just don’t miss dinner!” -Tom Bredvick
69: After being at the bank 30+ years, the one thing that sticks with me the most about Pete is that he is a man of few words. However, his actions speak volumes with his support of not only the people within the MNB family, but the entire community’s needs, no matter how big or small. He gives from the heart while not wanting any attention for his commendable actions. I will always remember how he treats people, from the local bum to the businessman, with the same respect no matter what the circumstances. -Lisa Einspahr
70: Favorite people, favorite places, Favorite memories of the past
71: These are the joys of a lifetime... These are the things that last.
73: Although I was an actual employee of MNB only three and a half years, I felt a part of the bank many more years. Pete Graff has been our farm loan officer for as long as I can remember. I was in banking almost thirty years, retiring as an employee of MNB April 27, 2007. When I learned that MNB (Pete) was considering purchasing Commercial Bank in Stratton where I was employed, I couldn’t have been happier. I knew MNB was a strong bank and would treat us fairly and be a good fit for our customers. At many NBA-provided educational meetings over the years, I was always happy when I would see Pete Graff there. For one thing, I knew the meeting would be important. Pete was always friendly and would talk to me. He was always encouraging and always had a smile. He didn’t just sit in his chair with his face in a newspaper trying to impress others how important he was. If ever I needed help, I always felt Pete “had my back” whether in banking or farming. I could depend on him to listen and give quiet advice. I’ve enjoyed knowing you, Pete. -Marilyn Goodenberger