Catholic 08

Mary Jane Goeke

June 5, 2023


Mary Jane (Linder) Goeke, a long-time resident of Keokuk, Iowa, passed away peacefully on June 5th, 2023 with family present.  A celebration of life memorial service is scheduled for Saturday, June 17th, All Saints Parish in Keokuk at 1 p.m. Funeral arrangements are at DeJong-Greaves-Printy Funeral Home in Keokuk, Iowa. Visitation at the funeral home is scheduled for Friday, June 16th from 2-7 p.m. with family meeting friends from 4-7 pm. Visitation will close with a Christian Vigil Service at 7 pm.

Mary Jane was born November 27th, 1931, to her parents Carl and Leota Linder of Kirksville, MO. Born and raised in the Northeast Missouri town Mary Jane grew up performing and singing with her two elder sisters, Norma and Velda.

She attended Kirksville High School and was a member of Graduate class of 1949; Mary Jane furthered her education at NE Missouri State Teachers College, Kirksville from 1949-1950 and completed a 2-year program in Music Education and Performance.  During these college years she was a member of the Beta Sigma Phi Sorority. She also performed in several student recitals and musical stage productions, often in the company of her leading man and future husband. Love found a way when she married Raymond Edward Goeke August 26, 1950, at Sacred Heart Catholic Parish.   

A gifted musician nurtured early in her life, Mary Jane sang and played piano and organ for numerous churches and organizations for over 70 years, often singing while playing.  She was a skilled accompanist to her students, friends, children, and husband for generations.  Mary Jane also led worship services at many Keokuk congregations including First Presbyterian Church, St. John’s Episcopal and her own spiritual home All Saints Parish. For many years Mary Jane co-led the singing (with husband Ray) and played for a local community choir, “The K Tones” and her local Rotary chapter.

Mary Jane partnered for 17 consecutive years 1963-1980 as a co-director, accompanist, and fellow founder with husband Raymond on the storied Summer Drama Music Workshop sponsored by Keokuk Schools. This annual musical production brought community, teachers and high schoolers together for many a midsummers performance in Wright Fieldhouse, Culvert Stadium and The Grand Theatre.

A work-from-home small business owner and operator before it was cool, Mary Jane started teaching music at the age of 13.  She taught private voice and piano to countless students for more than 65 years in Missouri towns and Keokuk. She played and/or sang for countless music contests, weddings and funerals for generations of parishioners, friends, and family.  Mary Jane also taught general music in Missouri public schools from 1949-1951.  At her recent 90th birthday celebration numerous former students and their progeny showered Mary Jane with cards, Facebook postings and stories of the great impact her instruction provided in their formative years. She loved her work, and she loved sharing the gift of music with her students and family.

Mary Jane was active as a board member and writer on the Keokuk Community Concerts Association for over 20 years. Patrons of the local art scene could always count on her carefully composed performance reviews published regularly in the local Daily Gate City. She also remained active in the League of Women Voters, Mothers Study Club and The PEO Sisterhood.

Mary Jane revered time with family both at home and through extensive travel. She did so first with her 5 children and husband across the US and Canada. And whether gathered away or hosting at home, she could always be found with a camera dangling from her wrist. This need to capture every moment on film would happen even at weddings, much to her children’s chagrin, urging us all to recreate a funny moment or pose once again. Although her family gave her considerable grief at the time, they are all now thankful for the volumes of photo albums with numerous “candid” photos meticulously annotated on the back.

Over the years Mary Jane continued to travel and explore new places with her sisters and their husbands on cruises and trips abroad including Europe and Mexico. Her annual travel with Ray included Florida for winter months and The Northwest for sight-seeing and family gatherings.

Mary Jane is preceded in death by her mother, father, two elder sisters and brother’s in-law: Norma & Fred Hulen, Velda & Bob Ewing.

Mary Jane is survived by her husband of 72 years, Ray Goeke; and all five children: Teresa Mathews, West DesMoines, IA; Babetta & husband Rick Davids, Traverse City, MI; R. Ed Goeke and wife Katie Bolt-Goeke, Springfield, MO; Joe Goeke, Seattle, WA; Chris Goeke and wife Lori Shaffer, Cape Girardeau, MO.; Her 11 grandchildren: Jonathan (Stephanie) Mathews; Ben (Ashley) Mathews; Nick (Lindsay) Davids, Matt (Samantha) Davids; Noelle (Davids) and Matt Tice; Danielle (Davids) and Dave Ruelle; Joshua and Kara Goeke; Katrina and Mallory Goeke; Annika Hedley Goeke; Sarah Goeke (Travis Staton-Marrero); and Catharine (James) Goeke-Munch.  Mary Jane is survived by her 13 great grandchildren: William, Eleanor & Evelyn Mathews; Michael & Alex Davids; Sloane & Hudson Davids; Landon and Levi Tice; Wyatt Ruelle; Bolt and Ender Goeke; and Sarah Ivy Goeke-Munch.

Many thanks to the Caregivers and Nurses of Independence Village of Waukee, and Suncrest Hospice of Des Moines for their loving care of Mary Jane at her journey’s end. 

In lieu of flowers memorials gifts may be given to the Keokuk Community Foundation.

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June 16, 2023

2:00 PM to 7:00 PM
DeJong-Greaves-Printy Funeral Home
917 Blondeau Street
Keokuk, IA 52632-4921

Vigil Service
June 16, 2023

7:00 PM
DeJong-Greaves-Printy Funeral Home
917 Blondeau Street
Keokuk, IA 52632-4921

Funeral Mass
June 17, 2023

1:00 PM
All Saints Catholic Church (Keokuk)


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