Lyle “Doug” Fackler

Lyle Douglas “Doug” Fackler

November 14, 1950 – January 6, 2024

Music legend, Doug Fackler, died in his family’s arms at his home in Omaha, Nebraska. He leaves behind a music legacy in the world of rock and roll. Doug emerged as a man of profound talent and spirit. He was a lover of the arts and a gifted musician who played in well-known rock bands.

He and his wife, Denise, were recently inducted into the Nebraska Rock and Roll Hall of Fame for their work with River City All Stars (2022) and Bumpy Action (2023).

Doug attended UNO after graduating from Burke High School in 1969. But his musical odyssey had begun years earlier when he formed a local band at age twelve, The Bushmen, and played some of the nostalgic hip places such as Sandy’s Escape. He was a self-taught guitarist who also sang vocals. He played by ear and could play anything; his band members recall.

He left college to pursue music for a living as a rock and roll star. He said, “This is what I want to do.”

During its reign in the 1970s, Bumpy Action was characterized as “a classic hippie congregation, shaggy, stoned and grooving out to their signature song, Dr. John’s ‘I Walk on Guilded Splinters.’” Denise joined the band on powerful vocals.

Bumpy Action played local gigs, notably at Omaha hot spots The Aquarius and The Eight Limited. The band often opened for headliners such as Three Dog Night, the Allman Brothers, Sha Na Na, and Dan Hicks and His Hot Licks at the Civic Auditorium, Music Hall, and in Lincoln venues. They were later the house band at famed Tulagi in Boulder, Colorado, where they fronted for rock stars who played at the legendary musical venue.

Doug put together another band called Lightning Lyle when the couple moved to California where he played with Eric Burdon (formerly of The Animals). The band appeared in local bars and clubs where they performed rock and also country music.

Once back in Omaha, their hometown, Doug and Denise became part of the River City All Stars that featured well-known guitarist Ron Cooley (later with Mannheim Steamroller) and Jack Greer on vocals, drummer Rich Walters, Brian Sampson on bass, Bucky McCann on sax, and John Roode piano.

The band played local venues but also were studio musicians for commercials created in Omaha. One gig was for the memorable country singer C.W. McCall of “Convoy” fame and for nationwide TV and radio commercials.

He is best known for his original compositions, the notable songs “Rain, Rain, Rain,” “Black Mountain Woman,” and “Atlanta Anna.”

When the Facklers retired from rock and roll in 1992, they bought and operated Shirley’s Diner in Millard, recently voted Best Diner in Omaha, still in the family under the guidance of their son Ben.

But music remained a part of Doug’s life when he met and became lifelong friends with Omaha TV broadcaster Dave Webber. Together they performed for various events such as conventions with Dave singing along with Doug on acoustic guitar.

Dave recalls that Doug loved rock and roll but his favorite music was the acoustic Mills Brothers and the Kingston Trio.

The creative musical DNA continues as his son Nik has become a notable filmmaker and musician himself. And grandson Max does a nice job playing trombone for his middle-school band.

Beyond his artistic and entrepreneurial pursuits, Doug was kind and intelligent, with a unique faith in God. He always seemed to have his guitar with him wherever he went, and he could always be caught humming something. This legacy is carried forward by his beloved wife, Denise, herself a fellow musician and poet. He adored his grandchildren.

The profound loss felt by Doug’s family and friends is challenging to articulate, yet amid the grief, it becomes impossible to overlook the enduring gifts and memorable harmony he left behind.

Doug’s parents, Wayne and Marge Fackler, preceded him in death. He is survived by his wife, Denise Rosholm Fackler, and their sons: Ben Fackler (Alyson Wendel) and their children, Maxwell and Mila; Nik Fackler (Kat Lessor) and their daughter, Faye Rose. Also, by his brothers, Jim Fackler (Cindy Workman) and Dave Fackler (Lily Keeler), and sister, Diane Fackler (Steve Ozaydin), and extended family.

The family asks for flowers to be sent to Heafey-Hoffmann-Dworak-Cutler, or in lieu of flowers, please consider donating to the Nebraska Music Hall of Fame in Doug Fackler’s name.

MEMORIAL SERVICE: 3:00 p.m., Sunday, January 28, 2024, at Heafey-Hoffmann-Dworak-Cutler, 7805 W. Center Road, Omaha, NE 68124.

25 Comments

  • Todd Sherlock Posted January 13, 2024 9:28 pm

    I was sadden to learn of Doug’s passing. He was a Keystone friend. We went to school together. He was such a talent at a young age. I always admired him. Prayers to all who loved him.

  • Jason & Donna Wallin Posted January 14, 2024 8:38 am

    So sorry to hear that Doug had passed away! He will be missed!!!

  • TOM MANN Posted January 14, 2024 11:28 am

    It was always such a pleasure to drop into Shirly’s Diner and touch base with Lightnin’ Lyle.
    I was both shocked and saddened to hear of his passing. I’m glad we had a chance to chat one last time a couple weeks before his passing. We never know when the last chance is going to be there.
    Godspeed Doug and prayers for those who loved him.

    • Patty cardenas Posted January 14, 2024 5:22 pm

      I was sadden to hear if Doug’s passing he will be missed by everyone who knew and Loved him! Doug was a great person we were very close when I worked for Shirley’s ! I actually just saw him a couple of months ago and we had a long nice visit!
      Prayers to the family! RIP Doug play that guitar always!
      Patty and Doc Cardenas

  • Patty cardenas Posted January 14, 2024 5:21 pm

    I was sadden to hear if Doug’s passing he will be missed by everyone who knew and Loved him! Doug was a great person we were very close when I worked for Shirley’s ! I actually just saw him a couple of months ago and we had a long nice visit!
    Prayers to the family! RIP Doug play that guitar always!
    Patty and Doc Cardenas

  • Ted Price Posted January 14, 2024 9:25 pm

    I always liked and admired Doug. I’m so sorry to hear of his passing.

  • Fred Christensen Posted January 16, 2024 4:25 pm

    God bless Doug and his family. They brought us much joy listening to their bands. Fred Christensen

  • Virgil and Rheanna Patlan (David Fackler & Lilly Keeler) Posted January 17, 2024 8:38 am

    We have met Doug many times at the diner, he was always so friendly. Our deepest condolences to his family. May God bring you peace and comfort in this time of new beginnings as he is with the Lord now.

  • Paul E. Yeaman Posted January 17, 2024 2:50 pm

    I’ve known Doug since the late 60’s and worked for him at the original Shirley’s, he will be truly missed by all who knew him and heard him preform, RIP brother, Paul Yeaman

  • Rich Fitzgerald Posted January 18, 2024 2:55 pm

    Doug gave a lot of us many pleasant musical memories. He was always so nice and approachable. Prayers for his loving family.

  • GREGORY CAVALIERI Posted January 18, 2024 3:29 pm

    I WAS A BUMPY ACTION GROUPIE -I SO ENJOYED THEIR SOUND AND PRESENTATION.THEY WERE TALENTED . DOUG AND DENISE PUT OUT SOME FINE TUNES. I HAD BEEN OVER TO THERE HOME ACROSS FROM MARIAN HIGH SCHOOL. I ENJOYED CELEBRATING WITH OD AND MICHAEL P.RYER OUTRAGEOUS.
    THOSE DAYS WERE PART OF MY MOST FORMATIVE YEARS. TO THINK THAT I LISTENED TO MICHAEL PRYER BELT OUT REALITY SANDWICH AT THE CELLAR. THINGS CAN’T GET BETTER THEN THAT. I WILL MISS
    YOU DOUG.S O MANY WILL. ROCK ON.

  • James Butler Posted January 19, 2024 5:51 am

    I’ve met Doug a time or two over the years, but I’ve known Denise since we were kids. Doug is a huge loss for Omaha, the Omaha music community and Shirley’s Diner fans everywhere. I’ve been to the Diner many times and when Doug was there, he was spending time meeting customers and swapping stories. He was a special guy and he will be missed.

  • Steve Jeub Posted January 20, 2024 2:09 pm

    Visited with Doug a just few weeks ago. Always pleasant and interested in talking about Burke High School friends. Did an incredible job bringing Shirley’s Diner from nothing to “the line starts back there”! Greatly missed

  • Theresa Maley Kasel Posted January 22, 2024 3:46 pm

    Doug and Denise both, gave us so many great nights of music and friendship. Me, Jo Ann, Trudy, Gina.. groupies .. Ranch Bowl, Stuart Andersens Cattle Company, so many other places that we would trek to, to hear them play, and have a few laughs at parties and band breaks. Prayers to his family, his memories live on. I’m so sorry to hear of his passing.

  • Maximilian Kurz Posted January 25, 2024 11:33 am

    I am very sorry to hear of the passion of Doug. I will really miss him greeting me and my family when we entered Shirley’s restaurant for dinner. My prayers go out to Doug’s family.

  • Laura Bruce Broughton Posted January 25, 2024 5:02 pm

    I’m sorry to hear of Doug’s passing. He was such a cool boss and person to know while I worked at Shirley’s Diner in high school and college. Those are happy memories I will hold dear and my heart goes out to his family.

  • Bill and Linda Janke Posted January 25, 2024 5:08 pm

    Denise, I can’t imagine what you’re going through. Doug was a talented musician, and his music will live on forever. Doug, I wish you could tell us what it’s like in Heaven’s way. Is it everything they say? Does the sun shine bright and clear? Is the angels’ music sweet to hear? No one on Earth knew Heaven’s needs were dire. But the angels had plans for you in their choir. Your departure leaves us with feelings of emptiness. Sometimes, it just doesn’t make sense.

  • Bruce C Milnikel Posted January 26, 2024 3:48 pm

    My Thoughts and Prayers are with Denise and all of their Family and Friends. Doug Rocked Omaha and I will always remember him fondly. His legacy in the Omaha Music scene is one that will forever be remembered. Vaya Con Dios and Rock the Heavens Brother 🙏

  • Beth McBride Posted January 27, 2024 11:37 am

    I cannot imagine the sense of loss the Fackler family must certainly be feeling. Doug had a profound impact on so many people, I am but one. The thought of never hearing him perform again leaves such a void. A striking human.

  • Terry Baker Posted January 28, 2024 10:10 am

    My prayers, love and condolences to Denise and the Fackler family. Thanks for all of the great memories from “back in the day” 1971-72. I was in the US Air Force stationed at Offutt AFB and soon discovered Bumpy Action. Even with my short military haircut amongst all of the hippie longhairs I was always welcomed by Doug and Denise into their home and wherever they played. I am proud to say I was a Bumpy Action groupie. Still have the poster of y’all. One memory in particular that stands out was a night concert in the middle of a farm field. Bumpy Action was the opening act, followed by Elton John who was just getting started, followed by the headliner, Rod Stewart and Faces. No doubt the angels in heaven are rockin out to Doug’s incredible guitar licks. Peace my old friend.

  • John LaPuzza Posted January 28, 2024 11:09 am

    It was a shock to read this online. Doug was a musician’s musician and a leader. I’m so glad we became friends, starting in the mid-80s, and an honor to have sung with him and Dave Webber on occasion. Condolences to the Fackler family. – John LaPuzza, Tucson, AZ

  • Trudy Muller Gutierrez Posted January 28, 2024 12:32 pm

    My thoughts and prayers are with Denise and the Fackler family. I will always remember the good times while listening to River City All Stars. You will be missed.

  • NEIL JOHNSEN Posted January 28, 2024 2:30 pm

    We are so sorry to hear of Dougs passing. Our deapest sympathy goes out to Denise and the rest of the family. Doug was always a great inspiration for me and many others in the music business. He will surely be missed….Neil & Bobbi Johnsen.

  • CORRINE SCHIPPOREIT Posted January 28, 2024 4:43 pm

    Sympathy to all of Doug’s family and to the rest of us who will miss him too. Once I had a personal song (Coreen, Correna)done for me when I paid our breakfast bill and he noted my name on the credit card. What a special experience!

  • Richard Armstrong Posted January 29, 2024 2:53 pm

    So sorry for your loss. When I heard the news that Doug passed I was stunned. He is way to young.

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