Bryan Johnson had already been laid off once from Cleaver-Brooks Nebraska Boiler last March.

Thursday, he learned it will happen a second time.

Cleaver-Brooks officials announced that Friday is the last day for Johnson and 20 of his co-workers.

"They basically said that if we wanted to, then we could leave basically whenever we want," Johnson said Thursday evening, taking a break from his work at the factory.

The facility at 6940 Cornhusker Highway will continue to employ more than 190 people, a company official said in a news release Thursday evening.

"Due to the current market conditions and project schedules, the company has made a decision to reduce the headcount in manufacturing operations by 21 people," divisional vice president M. Vasudevan said.

According to the Cleaver-Brooks website, Nebraska Boiler was established as a boiler repair shop in 1921. It was acquired by Cleaver-Brooks' parent company, Aqua-Chem, in 1998.

The laid-off workers make up about half of the shop's evening shift, Johnson said. About half of those positions will be filled by daytime employees, he said.

Johnson says there had been murmurs of layoffs for about two months. That's when potential jobs were being crossed off lists at the factory - even whole pages of jobs disappearing from the walls.

"There hasn't been a lot of stuff coming in over the last two months really," he said. "When I started back in January, there was quite a bit to do."

By the end of February, he was working 10-hour days Monday through Friday. People in some departments were working 10-hour shifts on the weekends, too, he said.

Johnson went back to 40 hours a week around April. Now he's at zero.

"A lot of us are kind of bummed about it," he said. "There's a lot of people out here that have a lot of family and stuff."

Johnson himself has a wife and an "almost-2-year-old."

The layoff means he'll be watching his finances a bit more closely, but he expects his family will survive.

"My wife's got a very solid job with the military," he said. "We did good through the last layoff, so I think we'll be perfectly fine going through this one."

Reach Zach Pluhacek at 402-473-7234 or