Josephine “Joey” Beckman (Slavin)
January 6, 1932 – October 27, 2022
VISITATION: Tuesday, November 1st from 5pm to 7pm at the West Center Chapel, followed by VIGIL SERVICE at 7pm.
MASS OF CHRISTIAN BURIAL: Wednesday, November 2nd at 10:30am, St. James Catholic Church, 4720 N. 90th St.
GRAVESIDE SERVICE: Wednesday, 2pm, Omaha National Cemetery.
To view live broadcasts of the Vigil Service and Mass, please visit www.heafeyheafey.com and click the “View Live Cast” button at the top of the home page.
Memorials are suggested to Hospice House and St. James Catholic Church.
Joey was born in Omaha to Frank and Bessie Slavin, the middle child of five close siblings: Sonny, Jeanie, Michael, and Jimmy. She often regaled her kids with tales of growing up on Pine Street and the antics of her brothers and sister.
She met the love of her life, Frank Beckman, on a blind date while she was in high school. He was an older man (a year) and a farm boy from Ashland. They began dating and continued a long-distance relationship after Frank enlisted in the Navy. They planned a wedding for one of his leaves from Bermuda, which was canceled last minute because of a hurricane. Joey changed the plans and reprinted the invitations, only to have Frank telegram her that the original date could work after all. So she changed all the plans back. Even after this tumultuous beginning, they enjoyed 69 happy years together.
They built the house, which is still the Beckman home, on a cul-de-sac filled with families, raising their five children, Lynn, Sharon, Dave, Marcia, and Janet. Being a homemaker was Joey’s dream and true calling. She cooked scrumptious meals, sewed their clothes, helped Frank in his enormous garden (canning tomatoes to use throughout the year in her spaghetti sauce,) and drove the kids to swimming lessons, ballet lessons, guitar lessons, ceramics lessons, Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, Camp Fire Girls, the library, church, ice rinks, restaurants (especially when Frank had his annual fishing trip), movies, the mall, parks, and friends’ houses. She took them to open their first bank accounts, to dentist and doctor appointments, and to Ben Franklin to buy penny candy on allowance day. She kissed their scrapes and made specially-requested birthday dinners and cakes. She taught them to drive, cook, sew, treasure family, and to be decent human beings.
Joey took typing and shorthand at Central High School, which prepared her well for jobs in the offices at Wilson’s Packing House and Watson Bros. She left the workforce for the all-consuming yet rewarding job of raising her kids. After they were grown, Joey had various short-term jobs before working many years as a secretary at area churches. She urged her children to take typing in high school, whether they wanted to or not, which they would later appreciate.
She loved bowling, the annual Slavin family picnics in Falls City, Christmas, her flower gardens, Bible Study at St. James, making ceramics that still grace the house for every season and holiday, the Cornhuskers, travel to visit good friends in California and Georgia and her far-flung kids, vacations with special friends the Cihas, and celebrating New Year’s Eves with the Samsons. Most of all, she loved her husband, her kids, her grandkids, and her great-grandkids. Family was everything to her, and she was everything to her family.
Joey is survived by her loving husband of 69 years, Frank; her children, Lynn Mullican (Marty), Sharon Beckman (Ron Pile), Dave Beckman (Karen), Marcia Murray (Kevin), Janet Swetson; ten special grandchildren: Sarah Weir (Jared), David Swetson (Lacey), Kelly Mullican, Nick Swetson (Jessica), Keith Murray (Sarah Entzminger), Brittany Swetson, Jessica Schilling (Cody), Brian Murray, Mary Swetson (Aaron Mendenhall), Zach Beckman; and ten great-grandchildren.