Eugene "Gene" McNamara
Eugene "Gene" Robert McNamara, a lifelong
resident of the Cedar Rapids area, entered into eternal life on Friday, July 13, 2018, at
the age of 91, at the Dennis and Donna Oldorf Hospice House in Hiawatha. Funeral Mass: 10 a.m. Wednesday, July 18, at St. Jude Catholic Church with visitation one hour prior. Visitation: 4 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, July 17, at Stewart Baxter Funeral & Memorial Services, Cedar Rapids, with a vigil at 4 p.m. Burial: Lisbon Cemetery.
Gene is survived by his wife of 70 years, Alma; children, Julie (Gary) Mann of Lebanon, Tenn., Jan (Jeff) Smith and Susan (Tom) Krejci, of Cedar Rapids; daughter-in-law, Carol McNamara of Marion; grandchildren, Erin, Craig, Sara, Jessica, Matt, Alison, Mike, Audrey and Sally; great-grandchildren, Ian, Olivia, Devon, Gracie, Julia, Colton, Madison, Seamus, John Paul, Hannah, Austin, Trent, Dylan, Norah, Chloe, Ella, Karrington, Jay, Anna, Caila, Larry and Wyatt; great-great-grandchildren, Grayson, Saylor, Cooper and Avery; sister, Theresa Eden of Atlanta, Ga.; as well as many nieces and nephews.
He was born in Anamosa, Iowa, on Nov. 25, 1926, to Edward Leo and Florence Julia (Dolan) McNamara. Gene was the sixth of seven children. He grew up in Ely and graduated from Ely High School in 1945. During his youth, he recalled growing up on a farm and that there were always plenty of chores to get done, and that one time a horse threw him and that he woke up with the horse standing over him.
Gene met the love of his life, Alma, at CeMar Acres in 1947; when she was skating and fell, he came along and helped her up. They married at St. Wenceslaus in 1948. To this union four children were born: Thomas Eugene, Julianne, Janelle Kay and Susan Mary.
All of the hard work on the farm helped him succeed in his first job in the oil industry with Shell Oil. While others would quit after a couple of weeks due to the physical nature of the job, he stayed and was soon asked to drive a semi, making deliveries all over Iowa and parts of Illinois. By 1960, Gene and his wife Alma bought a gas station from the Bervids and eventually established McNamara Oil. For more than 40 years, he worked alongside his son, Tom, eventually retiring in the '90s. During those years, he was fortunate to have associations with Shell, Getty, Skelly and Texaco Oil. He finished his career in the oil industry under the Big Red Star.
A member of St. Patrick's and St. Jude's, Gene was a deeply faithful man. He especially enjoyed golf, the Hawkeyes, fishing, hunting and traveling. He loved his family and provided wonderful experiences for them growing up. Together, Gene and Alma encouraged their children to follow their own paths and to raise exceptional grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Memorials may be directed to the Disabled Veterans of America or the Dennis and Donna Oldorf Hospice House.
He was preceded in death by his parents; son, Thomas; grandson, Joe; brothers, Leo and Joseph; and sisters, Mary, Margaret and Carol.
Please share your support and memories with Gene's family on his tribute wall at www.stewartbaxter.com under obituaries.