Monica Harvey, 71, of Stapleton, was “welcomed home” to the gates of Heaven on Aug. 2, 2019, after a brief stay in hospice at the Callaway Good Life Center.
She was born on May 27, 1948, to Eben “Scotty” Scott and Esther (McCaslin) Scott. She grew up on the McCaslin family homestead east of Broken Bow. She attended the Rose Valley School through the eighth grade and then graduated from Broken Bow High School in 1966. Music was always a part of Monica’s life through singing and playing the steel guitar.
Monica graduated from Kearney State College in 1969 with a home economics teaching degree. While student teaching at Stapleton High School, she met a fellow teacher by the name of Robert “Bob” Harvey. They were married on Jan. 2, 1970, in Ansley, and made Stapleton their home for the rest of her life. In January, they would have celebrated their 50th anniversary. Monica taught in North Platte, Oconto, Callaway, Tryon and for most of her career at Stapleton. She was always looking for innovative ways to attract students and especially boys to her classes and FHA (Future Homemakers of America) program. She challenged her students to be entrepreneurs. She was very proud of her students that took the challenge and helped organize the Teen Center in Stapleton. She enjoyed taking many students to FHA conventions across the country. In 1992, Monica received the NVHETA Outstanding Teacher award and in 1993 the NVA Outstanding Home Economics Teacher award.
After teaching, Monica poured her entrepreneurial spirit into other endeavors. She served on the Governor’s Commission for Rural Economic Development for three years. She helped promote economic development on Highway 83, including getting Highway 83 designated as the Veterans of Foreign Wars Memorial Highway. She organized some “Welcome Home” celebrations for Vietnam veterans along the highway. This was the beginning of her ultimate calling and ministry to veterans.
In 2001, Monica began her Veteran’s Music Ministry as an outreach to all veterans, but especially Vietnam veterans. She sang at veterans homes, hospitals, psychiatric wards and correctional centers, and anywhere else she could find veterans that needed encouragement. In 2004, Monica began volunteering at traveling Vietnam memorial walls. Monica has volunteered and sung at over 150 wall events in over 30 states. Her last two wall events were in Grand Island in May and Lusk, Wyoming, in July. She also sang and volunteered at biker rallies, Vietnam vet reunions, national memorials, retreats and tributes around the country.
Monica went by the nickname “Lil Sis” as she just liked to be available with a listening ear for whoever needed to talk. Monica was probably best known for the “Band Aid For the Heart” pins that she passed out everywhere she went. The pin symbolized her mission in life, to point people back towards God where they could find true healing for their wounded heart. In the process she made many lifelong friends. When not traveling, Monica was continuing her encouragement of vets through the phone, email and Facebook.
Monica loved watching her family participate in sports. First it was attending games as a coach’s wife, then watching her two sons Scott and Zane playing in all sports at Stapleton. Later, it was watching Zane coach at Broken Bow, and finally it was watching her two grandkids, Joshua and Austin, play at Broken Bow.
Monica was preceded in death by her parents, and son Zane Harvey, who died in a school van accident in 2012.
Monica is survived by her husband, Bob Harvey of Stapleton; son, Scott (Jennie) Harvey of Broken Bow; and grandchildren Joshua and Austin Harvey of Broken Bow. She is also survived by her two brothers, Raymond (Sharon) Scott of Reagan, Texas, and Harold (Dutchess) Scott of Lincoln; and brothers-in-law, Mike (Mary Becker) Harvey of Arnold, Bud (Chris) Harvey of Stapleton; sisters-in-law, Kay (Norm) Northey of North Platte and Kathleen (Jim) Jensen of Missouri; mother-in-law Hazel Hagler of Arnold; and several nieces and nephews.
Memorials may be made to the veterans honor flights and online condolences can be shared at adamsswanson.com.
Funeral service will be 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, Aug. 6, at Stapleton High School. Burial will follow at McCain Cemetery. Visitation with the family to greet friends will be from 5-7 p.m. Monday, Aug. 5, at the Cornerstone Presbyterian Church in Stapleton. Adams & Swanson Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.