Thomas Lee Vanover Sr. 86 years of age, of Beatrice passed away Sunday, December 29, 2019 at his home. He was born on November 10, 1933, to Nurell and Cordie Alice (Eads) Vanover in Glenover, Beatrice, Nebraska. Tom lived in Beatrice or Arkansas all of his life. He was a Navy veteran of the Korean War. Tom married Dorothy May Schmale on June 8, 1956 and they had four children; Terry Lee, Cindy Lou, Thomas Lee Jr. and Sue Lynn. He worked as an electrician's helper when the four elementary schools were being built in Beatrice. Tom started working at Beatrice Steel Tank in 1956. He was laid off in October 1959 and then worked odd jobs till 1962 when he went back to Tote Systems (formally called Beatrice Steel Tank). He worked there until he retired in January of 2000 (at that time it was called Hoover Group, Inc.). Tom drove various racecars from 1956 thru 1967 at Beatrice, Fairbury, Capital Beach, Midwest Speedway and at Belleville, Kansas. He enjoyed watching NASCAR races, especially if a Ford was winning. Tom watched almost all other forms of car racing on TV and got a kick out of watching Kyle’s races on people’s phones, professional football, teasing the grandkids and great grandkids, BBQ grilling and teasing and tormenting anyone within close distance.
Tom is survived by his daughters, Cindy Bohlmeyer, Sue Buss and husband Billy; son Tom Jr. and wife Michele, all of Beatrice; grandchildren, Deanna Rentschler and husband Dave, Cassie Alm and significant other Josh Frase, Mike Vanover and significant other Holly Jones, Crystal Vanover, Kyle Vanover and wife Shauna, Hailee Buss and husband Lance, Meredith Phelps and Paige Buss; great grandchildren, Jacob and Weston Edmond, Bree Rentschler, Bryce Kopf and Piper Frase, Drax Vanover, Ashlen and Brayden Vanover, Berkleigh and Rowen Buss, Gavin and Preslee Vanover; sister Lois “Carole” Stratton and husband Lowell of Fruita, Colorado; sister-in-law, Linda Rulla of Corning Iowa; sister in-law, Shirley Schmale of Beatrice; and several special cousins, nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his wife, Dorothy (August 8, 2011), father, Nurell (July 19, 1964); his mother, Cordie (April 24, 2006); father in-law, Elmer Schmale (January 18, 1992); mother in-law, Alena Elizabeth “Liz” (May 9, 1991); one daughter Terry Lee Alm (May 27, 2006); son-in-law, Larry Lee Alm (May 22, 2008); sister-in-law, Betty Simmons-Utley (February 29, 2008); brother-in-law, Vernon Schmale(February 13, 2017); sister-in-law, Judy Reedy (April 27, 2013); aunt, Maxine Neal (April 30, 2011) of Beatrice.
Funeral Services will be held at 10:30 AM Thursday, January 2, 2020 at Harman-Wright Mortuary in Beatrice with Chaplain Sharon Schuster officiating. Casual attire such as racing shirts (local or NASCAR) is appreciated. Interment with military rites will follow in the Evergreen Home Cemetery in Beatrice. Visitation will be held from 1 to 5 PM with family greeting friends from 3 to 4:30 PM Wednesday, January 1, 2020 at Harman-Wright Mortuary in Beatrice. Memorials are suggested to the family’s choice in care of the mortuary. Harman-Wright Mortuary in Beatrice in charge of arrangements.
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