Cover photo for Floyd Foreman's Obituary
Floyd Foreman Profile Photo
1934 Floyd 2024

Floyd Foreman

June 12, 1934 — April 3, 2024

Floyd Dean Foreman had a ravenous appetite for life. He tried on jobs the way some men try on suits. Farmer, banker, pilot, auctioneer, cattle feeder/feedlot operator, real estate broker, real estate developer, trucking company owner, steel worker, house painter, insurance agent, teacher, entrepreneur, landlord, investor and more! That was after a childhood where he shined shoes, delivered 100 papers a day and worked in a grocery store --all before the tender age of 12. Floyd never saw an impediment to trying something new, just the challenge. He was a fearless optimist with energy to burn.

No one could have predicted the tremendously varied and vibrant life ahead for the curly-haired baby born at home on June 12, 1934, to Floyd Foster and Vera (Skelton) Foreman at their farm in Loveland, Iowa.

Farm life taught Floyd the value of hard work. To attend Abraham Lincoln High School, Floyd got up early and hitchhiked 14 miles, in every kind of Iowa weather, from his Honey Creek home to Council Bluffs. He worked nights and weekends at a gas station in Missouri Valley. In 1952, Floyd became the first in family to graduate from high school.

Floyd put himself through college at what is now called the University of Nebraska-Omaha. He attended classes during the day and drove a Peter Pan Bakery delivery truck at night. Keeping this exhausting schedule, Floyd graduated "Omaha U" in 1956 with a degree in business. (Floyd's first job at Peter Pan was helping bake bread. He became a member of the confectionary worker's union at only 15 - a secret his boss didn't discover until his co-workers threw him a party when he turned legal age.)

These years weren't all hard work and classes. It was during this time Floyd fell deeply in love with a beautiful, brown-eyed girl, Betty Rae Maaske. They were married on his 21st birthday, June 12, 1955. Floyd and Betty made a case for how strongly opposites attract. They were devoted to each other for 62 years until Betty died in 2018.

The site of their nuptials was St. Paul's Lutheran Church where Betty brought Floyd to faith. It was there they baptized and confirmed their three children. Floyd embraced his church family. He particularly loved the congregation's little ones, teasing and giving them nicknames. St. Paul's was Floyd's spiritual home for nearly 70 years.

While Floyd lived most of his life in Council Bluffs, he spent 1943-1946 in Venice Beach, California. His parents moved there during World War II to work at the Douglas Aircraft factory in Santa Monica. The Foreman's returned to Council Bluffs following the war. Floyd stayed until taking Betty and his two daughters to Idaho Falls, Idaho. The pending birth of his third child brought them back home.

With his uncanny "sixth sense," Floyd knocked on the door of the Wymore family farm at just the right time. They sold him their historic property on which the Mormon's built the barn in 1847 and where Abraham Lincoln purportedly ate watermelon on the front porch. Floyd moved his family in on May 1, 1961. He reluctantly left in October of 2023.

The farm was the perfect place to raise a family. His three children, Kathy, Cindy and Steve, thrived here. Floyd picked out calves from his feedlot for them to raise in 4-H. He cleared part of the barn for building homecoming floats. And he installed a "kid magnet' trampoline for the backyard. He and Betty attended almost every Lewis Central basketball, football, wrestling, tennis and track meet in which their kids participated along with school plays, swim meets and science fairs.

While Floyd loved the farm, he also had a passion for travel. He bought one of the first Winnebago motor homes and planned family trips to Europe and to almost all fifty states. He and Betty traveled five times to New Zealand to visit Karen Brady Johnston, their foreign exchange student. Floyd and Betty's 50th Anniversary was celebrated with a family cruise to Alaska. Their last big trip was to Great Britain to trace family roots. Floyd later learned his English heritage goes back to 1645. His immigrant ancestor, Robert Forman, was one of eighteen men who founded Flushing (now Queens) New York.

While work and travel were important aspects of Floyd's life, like most of us it's friends and family who make life richest. Floyd's quick, dimpled smile and good humor won many friends. He didn't know a stranger and loved nothing more than long conversations on the telephone and in person. Floyd enjoyed a good debate, especially on politics. But, in what today seems a lost art, after having a heated exchange, Floyd patted his "opponent" on the back and shared a beer or meal.

Floyd was resilient in the last months of his life, overcoming many challenges. He passed peacefully the morning of April 3, 2024, in Council Bluffs, a few months shy of his 90th birthday. He is survived by his daughters and sons-in- law Kathryn Morrissey and Dan; Cynthia Foster and Gordon; son and daughter-in-law Steven and Carol Foreman; grandchildren Colleen Morrissey and her husband, Sean Kamperman; Joe Morrissey, Elizabeth Foreman and Garrett Foster and great-granddaughter Nora Morrissey Kamperman.

Floyd will be buried in Branson Cemetery -- the fourth generation of both sides of his family to rest there.

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Friday, April 5, 2024

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Friday, April 5, 2024

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Saturday, April 6, 2024

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