William “Bill” Donald Goeken
March 13, 1954 – June 9, 2022
Bill was born in Omaha, NE to Benedict and Mirella (Zimmerer) Goeken, both of whom have since passed away. Bill is survived by his sisters, Carla Petrick-Martindale (Rick Martindale), Catherine Davis (Donald Davis), Linda Kanger (Lawrence Kanger) and Laura Hawkins (Kenneth Hawkins); brother, Brian Goeken (Cindy Goeken); several nieces, nephews, and numerous cousins. Also survived by his longtime friend of 22 years, Dottie Braniff, her son John, and granddaughter, Claire. Bill and Dottie shared many adventures, and as Dottie says, “we always had each other’s back”.
Bill attended Our Lady of Lourdes grade school and graduated from Omaha South High School. He started working during high school and never stopped! He had numerous jobs with a wide variety of interests. His father, Ben, had a significant influence on his ability ‘to fix anything’. Bill could make it work, even if he had to improvise. “Tinkerer” might be the word to describe Bill. He was that expert, pro, and specialist of many professions. Yes, a jack-of-all trades. He was a man of many diverse talents holding positions for companies all across the United States.
We all know that Bill had a passion for flying. He attained his PILOT license, and his treasured CESSNA while spending hours with his buddies at the South Omaha Airport. He loved his nickname, “Sky King” that stayed with him the rest of his life.
Another one of his many interests besides the treasured airplane were his “classic’ cars. Who remembers his 1966 Chevelle SS, a 1971 Corvette, the Opal Manta, 1970 Dodge Challenger, 1969 Chevy Nova, a Pontiac Trans Am, the 1978 Ford Bronco, and even a 1957 Golden Hawk Studebaker?
Omaha may have been home base for Bill, but there were many other stops through his truck driving years to satisfy his desire to travel over the road. While he lived in Las Vegas surely Bill thought it just made sense to be a Keno dealer and Keno Room Manager at the Casinos. During his time living in Los Angeles, Bill worked at a TV Cable Station in charge of the Programming for the graveyard shift. When Bill moved to Maurice, Louisiana, he worked for Aero Service Inc. At Areo he utilized his Commercial Pilot license and flew Charters. And just for kicks he worked in the Gulf on an Oil Rig! Then came the use of his CDL license working for Werner Enterprises. Long road trips and lots of miles kept him busy. He even hauled BMWs for a New York Transport Company. Employment with W.S. Bunch Corporation of Omaha took him to many locations with their industrial coating process, sandblasting all types of structures from small water towers to bridges. Most recently he served as their Safety Director. As you can tell by this history, we are sharing here that he loved adventure. But he also liked “work.” His neighbors, ‘South O’ neighbors’, would tell you he would do anything for them. Help with repairs, fix a problem, or whatever and whenever he was needed. He certainly was kind and helpful to everyone he encountered.
Most of us knew Bill as a man of few words. Bill may not have said it; but he deeply loved his family and friends, which he showed through his thoughtfulness.
CELEBRATION OF LIFE: Friday, June 24th with VISITATION from 5pm to 7pm at the West Center Chapel, followed by Prayer Service/Time for Sharing at 7pm.
To view a live broadcast of the Services, please visit www.heafeyheafey.com and click the “View Live Cast” button on the home page.