Retiring Secretary Gale Takes Grandfather’s Tales of Old West With Him


December 21st, 2018

In a story for NET News, Fred Knapp tells the story of John C. Gale, grandfather of John A. Gale, who is retiring from his 18-year tenure as Nebraska Secretary of State next month.

The elder Gale, left at 14 years old to fend for himself and his family, acquired various skills necessary for survival in the late 19th century American West–herding cattle, riding horses, shooting guns. Eventually, he became part of Union Pacific’s Special Services, which provided security for the railroad.

He tracked down train robbers, got caught up in shoot-outs, and was responsible for protecting presidents when they traveled by rail. He served from the 1910s until 1946, and lived on in retirement until his death in 1962. Now, like his grandfather, Secretary Gale is ready to “ride off into the sunset.”

“He kind of had this mystique about him, and this history of law enforcement, and having been a man who knew how to ride horses, shoot guns, apprehend criminals — he was kind of a Batman, Superman kind of a character in my mind,” he says.

For the full story, visit NET News.

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