OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — Milton Andrew Munson Jr. was a Hastings man who loved Nebraska football and loved betting. He died on Nov. 16. His sons took on his obituary. They had not spoken to him in quite some time and given their father's experience with mental health, they knew they had to be honest.
"We were going to keep it honest and something we wanted to put out there. We thought it’d be selling him short to not mention this really significant aspect of his life and thought it’d be helpful for people who might be struggling with the same thing with family and relationships," Todd Munson, Milton Munson's son said.
They say their dad was a big personality who loved to place bets, which stemmed partially from his addiction struggles.
"Our dad was a, for lack of better words, very outrageous personality and sort of really an all-or-nothing kind of guy. If it was Husker game day weekend, it was 'Go Big Red' and my brother and I were indoctrinated into Husker nation since birth and everything was the Huskers. If it wasn’t football season my dad would be taking my brother and I fishing or to the horse track because that’s something you did in the '80s with kids, you’d take them to the track and teach them how to gamble," Todd Munson said.
In keeping with being honest and true to their dad, they asked those who cared for Munson to place an "irresponsibly large wager on Nebraska beating Iowa" in lieu of flowers.
"The idea of placing an irresponsibly large wager on Nebraska beating Iowa, we thought it was a perfect tribute to our dad because he lived to gamble on anything and that kind of leads to his addiction issues," Todd Munson said.
The obituary gained the attention of sports fans all over the country, including local sports radio hosts of Unsportsmanlike Conduct on 1620 the Zone.
"I thought it was funny and thought other Husker fans would get a kick out of it so I took a couple screenshots and it blew up in a way I didn’t anticipate," Josh Peterson, co-host of the show said.
He and his guest co-host decided to crowdfund for money to place a bet on Nebraska in honor of Milton. It took off.
"I casually mentioned it at the end of Monday's show. By the time I got home, I live five minutes away, there was already $300 dollars in my Venmo account. By dinner it was over $1,000," Peterson said.
They've raised over $7,000. Of that, $1,000 will be placed on the bet which — if the Huskers win — would double the money. The rest, and any winnings, will be donated to Big Brothers Big Sisters. The Munsons would like some of the money to be used to take the kids to a Nebraska game next year.