William J. “Bill” Stecher

William J. “Bill” Stecher

William J. “Bill” Stecher


William J. “Bill” Stecher, 78, of Centralia, passed away Friday, April 14, 2023, at Mercy Medical Center in Dubuque, surrounded by his family. Visitation will be from 2 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, April 18, at Egelhof, Siegert & Casper Funeral Home and Crematory, 2659 John F. Kennedy Rd., Dubuque, where there will be a prayer service at 1:30 p.m. Mass of

Chrisitan Burial will be at 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, April 19, at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church, Peosta, and will be livestreamed at www.egelhofsiegertcasper.com. Fr. Michael Schueller will officiate. Burial will be in St. John’s Cemetery, Centralia. Military honors will be accorded by Dubuque County Amvets Post #13. Condolences and memories may be shared at www.egelhofsiegertcasper.com.

Bill was born April 30, 1944 at home in Lattnerville, Iowa, the son of Carl and Grace (Biggin) Stecher. When Bill was five years old, the family purchased a farm in Centralia where he resided for another 45 years. Bill was raised in a strong Catholic family and in his youth served as an altar boy and later an usher and lector. Bill’s devout Catholic faith sustained him throughout his whole life. Bill graduated from Western Dubuque High School in Peosta in 1962, where he played basketball and baseball. Upon graduation, Bill proudly served in the Iowa Army National Guard from 1962-68 and participated in the construction of the flood wall in Dubuque during his service. Bill briefly worked at Flexsteel and the John Deere Dubuque Works before committing to farming full time. He met Sharon Heacock at a dance at the Dubuque County Fairgrounds. Sharon and Bill married on April 27, 1968, at Holy Ghost Catholic Church, Dubuque. Bill and Sharon owned and operated the dairy farm in Centralia for 25 years. Sharon preceded Bill in death on Sept. 9, 2018, shortly after celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary on April 27, 2018.

After retiring from farming, Bill was a forklift operator at Georgia Pacific in Dubuque for 10 years. He later worked part-time delivering flowers for Flowerama and the Locust St. Hy-Vee, where he made many friends.

Bill was a member of the Dubuque County Amvets Post 13, The Knights of Columbus Rural Peosta Council 5513, Key City Corvettes and a life-long member of St. John the Baptist Catholic Church. Bill retired after 30 years of dedicated service on the Centralia Fire Department. He was a faithful blood/platelet donor with over 125 donations to the American Red Cross. Bill was an enthusiastic Euchre player and was always up for a game of cards with his friends. He had enjoyed hunting, picking walnuts, making wine, collecting antique toys, gardening, fishing with Sharon and his grandsons, making raspberry pie, the Iowa Hawkeyes, car shows, baked beans and visiting with anyone and everyone. His greatest joy was spending time with his family.

Bill is survived by his children, Jody (Steve) Rausch of Robins, Kim (Calvin) Gilbert of Cedar Rapids and Al (Amy) Stecher, of Central City; his grandchildren, Alex (Desirae Hesseltine) Himmelsbach, Austin Himmelsbach, Aaron Gilbert and Jack and Jase Stecher; his great-grandchild, Wyatt Himmelsbach; his siblings, Tom (Suzanne) Stecher of Peosta and Suzanne Houselog of Dubuque; his sister-in-law, Shirley (Roger) Dalbkermeyer of Dubuque, his sister-in-law, Sandy (David) Staat of Lonoke, Ark.; and many nieces, nephews and cousins.

In addition to his wife, Bill was preceded in death by his parents; his sister, Sandra (Jack) Reimer; and his brother, Rev. Kenneth C. Stecher.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Centralia/Peosta Fire Department, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, St. John the Baptist Catholic Church or make a blood donation to the American Red Cross.

The family would like to thank the nursing staff at Mercy Medical Center for taking excellent care of Bill.

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