There will be fewer laughs and smiles with the passing of Gene Ranae Meyer, 79, of Oak Point, TX on December 10, 2013.
Gene was born on January 21, 1934, in Bakersfield, CA to F.A. and Irma Nemecek Meyer. He received an Associate degree from Bakersfield College and was an Agronomy major on scholarship at UC Davis before volunteering for the Army and serving with the 565 Ordinance Company in Nancy, France. He was called home after the sudden passing of his father to work the family farm in the Wheeler Ridge area.
He was smitten for life with Rebecca Lynch, whom he married in 1957. They moved to Bakersfield in 1967.
Gene worked at Berchtold Equipment Co. before beginning his career in the welding industry at Hopper, Inc., in Bakersfield. He moved to Denton, TX in 1972 to join Victor Equipment Co. where he served as Product Manager, Director of Litigation Support, and retired in 1998 as Director of Product Integrity for then Thermadyne Industries. He took great pride in product development, safety evaluation and training, leaving his personal mark on welding techniques and equipment used from a simple first welding kit to building the Alaska Pipeline and the M1 Abrams tank. He participated in authoring and editing professional publications including the American Welding Society (AWS) Handbook, the Tool and Manufacturing Engineers Handbook, and technical publications for The American Society of Testing Materials, The American Society for Materials, and Thermadyne Industries. He served six years as Chairman of the AWS Committee for OxyFuel Welding and Cutting.
To his grandchildren, Grandpa was simply the man who could fix anything. He was a "wise teacher" who taught his children and grandchildren that just about everything could be figured out with the right combination of hard work and ingenuity. His numerous home improvement projects kept him busy, including their dream retirement home on Lake Lewisville, and earned him the 1-800-CALL-GENE fix-it hotline among his neighbors, to whom he was always glad to lend a hand.
Upon retirement he served on the Oak Point Planning and Zoning Board, became a Master Gardener, sang bass with the Denton Community Chorus, and was a member of the Denton Antique Tractor and Primitive Club. He was an avid reader and WWII history buff, and joined the first Emeritus College class at UNT. Gene met his goal of traveling to all 50 states and enjoyed many trips abroad with Rebecca. He had the mind of an engineer, the analytical skills of a lawyer, a keen wit, and a story, joke or poem for every occasion. Most of all, he made us smile and laugh each day, and let each of us know how special we were.
His greatest pride and joy, and now legacy, is his very close and loving family. Gene is survived by his wife of 56 years, Rebecca; son SGM David M. Meyer and wife Jana of Southlake; daughter Darienne K. Hall, RD and husband Bruce of Coppell; and son Darren E. Meyer, MD and wife Maura of McKinney. Grandchildren, who all learned to drive on their Grandpa's riding mower, include Lindsey and Derrick Meyer; Ryan and Sarah Hall; and Daniel, Andrew, Matthew and Catherine Meyer. He leaves much loved nieces and nephews, and an extended family including exchange students Miriam Helder of The Netherlands and Peter Holm of Denmark. He is preceded in death by sisters Dorothy Stanton and Arlene Ritchie.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to Denton Christian Preschool and The Antique Tractor and Primitive Club Scholarship Fund.
A celebration of life will be held at First Presbyterian Church in Denton on Saturday, Dec. 21st, at 2:00 p.m. following a private burial at Roselawn Cemetery with five grandsons and great-nephew Paul Ritchie, MD of NJ as pallbearers.
Online condolences can be made at DeBerryFuneralDirectors.com.