History of Apache Camper Center
During the 1960’s, the Sothan family loved to camp and took advantage of renting units through another dealer for a few years until Marian Sothan decided that she loved camping so much that she thought that she could sell them as well. Taking a few units on consignment, she proved that she was as good as her word, and she sold several units from the back yard of the Sothan home in Seward, Nebraska. This was 1967, and was the formation of Apache Camper Center. Amazingly, she was raising 3 grade school age children while her husband Kermit worked at Concordia College full time.
Marian developed ovarian cancer, and Kermit went from working at the business on weekends and summers to taking over during her illness. He oversaw the functions of both stores, and tragically, the Sothan family lost Marian Sothan to cancer in 1982 at the age of 50. The business managed to persevere despite losing her, and went on to expand even more by purchasing the location in Bellevue where the store is currently, with a 3 acre plot of undeveloped farmland in town in 1992. Through hard work by Kermit and his son David, decisions were made with foresight that was not realized until many years later. Kermit developed cancer in the latter part of the 1990’s, but made the decision to move the original Lincoln location to a larger 5 acre area on the south end of town and started construction on a state of the art facility. Unfortunately, Kermit succumbed to the cancer before seeing completion of the project in 1997.
Since then, both locations have been managed and overseen by their son David Sothan, and both have steadily grown under his management. In 2010, David saw the opportunity to once again expand to an area of Nebraska that was in need of an RV dealership, and started the process of developing the newest location in Kearney, Nebraska on 3 acres of ground with frontage on I-80, west of the Arch. The newest facility opened with much fanfare in October, 2014, and will be a definite asset to the western part of Nebraska.
Currently, David Sothan is overseeing all 3 locations and is looking forward to big things in the RV industry, and for the business itself. Supported by a dedicated staff, as well as his step mother Joan, and his wife, Nancy, the business will continue into the future with confidence and success.