Dec. 27, 1953 – Sept. 5, 2018
Joel Timothy Suhr, son of Marvin and Virginia Suhr (Fremont), was born on Dec. 27, 1953, in Webster City, Iowa, and died on Sept. 5, 2018, at University of Nebraska Medical Center at the age of 64. Joel has three older brothers, Paul Suhr (Donna), Omaha, Gene Suhr (Julie), Rensselaer, Indiana, and Doug Suhr (Jody), Temple, Texas, and nieces, nephews and their children.
Joel graduated from Fort Dodge High School in 1972 where he received the coveted Henry W. Schultz Award at graduation for athletic and scholastic achievement as well as exemplary conduct. Joel went on to attend Midland University in Fremont, where he played basketball and graduated in 1976. Following graduation Joel enlisted in the U.S. Army. He spent a lifetime supporting the United States of America in public service as a U.S. Army Lieutenant and U.S. Government Civilian employee for 30 years at Fort Lewis, Washington, and Rock Island Arsenal, Rock Island, Illinois.
On Sept. 5, 1982, Joel married Mary Frances Weatherby in Indianola, Iowa. They lived in Des Moines, Iowa, for a short time, moved to Bettendorf, Iowa, and then transferred to Kitzingen, Germany, for three years where Joel served as a Logistics Assistance Representative (LAR) civilian employee supporting the U.S. Army. Joel and Mary made the most of their stay in Europe traveling extensively with family as well as military and civilians who have remained lifetime friends. After returning from Europe in 1988, they made Bettendorf their home for 21 years. Joel was an avid supporter of the Bettendorf Bulldogs and although he had no children of his own playing sports, he received the Most Loyal Fan award in 2007 and was honored at Homecoming that year. Joel’s highlight of his life was when his daughter, Jennifer Marie Suhr, born June 30, 1990, currently living in Omaha, became part of his family.
Upon retirement from government service, Joel and Mary moved to Omaha, where they both have numerous family members. They are members of St. Michael Lutheran Church in Omaha. Upon arrival in Omaha Joel reconnected with many of his Midland University friends and attended almost all of their sporting events while expanding his extensive circle of friends. One of his favorite things to do was to spend time working with his cousin, Wayne Francis, on his grandparents’ farm in Fremont, and attending family gatherings.
Joel had a love for all sports. He was an avid Iowa Hawkeyes and Chicago Cubs fan and spent many hours on the golf course. He loved country music, Gaither Vocal Band and David Phelps. He had a special gift of connecting with those around him wherever he went and made a unique individual bond with each. His quick wit, sense of humor and outgoing personality drew others to him. He played Santa during the holidays for family and friends and connected with children in a special way.
Burial will take place on Oct. 5 at 2 p.m. at the Omaha National Cemetery, 14250 Schram Rd., Omaha, followed by snacks and sharing stories from 3-5 p.m. at St Michael Lutheran Church, 13232 Blondo St., Omaha, NE 68164
A Celebration of Life service will take place on Oct. 6 at 11:30 a.m. at St. Michael Lutheran Church.
Memorial gifts may be sent to Midland University, Attn: Development Office (Joel Suhr Memorial), 900 N. Clarkson St., Fremont, NE 68025. Please make checks payable to Midland University with “Joel Suhr Memorial” on the memo. “Let your FAITH be bigger than your fear.”
John A. Gentleman Mortuaries and Crematory, 72nd St. Chapel, 1010 N. 72nd St., Omaha, NE 68114