Gary L. Tuma
October 19, 1944 – January 17, 2023
VISITATION: Sunday, January 22, from 2-4pm.
SERVICE: Monday, 11am, all at West Center Chapel. Family Interment: Calvary Cemetery.
To view a live broadcast of the service, please visit www.heafeyheafey.com and click the “View Live Cast” button at the top of the home page.
In lieu of flowers, memorials will be directed by the family.
Preceded in death by parents. Survived by wife, Joy; daughter, Sheri (Troy); granddaughters: Alexia, Jessica, and Zeta; sister, Lorene (Jerry); many other loving family members and friends.
Gary was born in Omaha, NE, on October 19, 1944, to John and Belle (Czapla) Tuma. He graduated from South High in 1962 and married Joy in 1966. Gary served in the United States Army, trained in communications, and served at the White House under Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon. He traveled to places such as Uruguay, Australia, and Hawaii with the president to set up speech and recording equipment.
Gary and Joy welcomed their new baby girl, Sheri, at Walter Reed Medical Center in July of 1969 and then said goodbye to D.C. to return home to Nebraska. He was a manager at Six West Theater before becoming an Omaha firefighter. He excelled at being an apparatus engineer and valued being part of a team that supported each other like family. Gary and Joy also worked at the Original Caniglia’s for many years until it closed.
Gary enjoyed doing yard work, tinkering with various things, and had quite a collection of model firetrucks and cars. He had a bit of artistic talent as well and dabbled in a few projects. This included painting a few Christmas houses and always adding his own touch to greeting cards. Gary and Joy were lucky enough to take several trips to one of their favorite places, Hawaii, and traveled to many areas of the continental U.S. They also enjoyed spending time with their dear friends, Tom and Elena.
Gary truly loved his family and liked to spoil his granddaughters in his own way. He took them to the library and Dairy Queen and bought them fun little toys at Dollar Tree, which he liked to play with as well. His girls remember his love of music and bringing books and their mother’s old toys to play with when he visited. He was a devoted husband, father, grandfather, and friend.