John Charles Heishman, 68, of Kansas City, MO, passed away in the early hours of Monday, November 19th, 2018 at his home under Hospice Care with his loving wife, Denise, and his four adoring cats at his side.
Born December 7th, 1949, in State Center, IA, John was the oldest of three children born to Charles “Junior” Heishman and Ruth (Osborne) Heishman. He graduated from West Marshall High School in State Center, IA with the Class of 1968. John honorably served his country after being drafted into the U.S. Army in 1970. He lived in California and Oregon from 1975-1978, which was a formative and important time for him. While on the West Coast he received a two-year degree from Cuesta College in San Luis Obispo, CA. On June 1st, 1996, he married Denise Rae (DeVries) Heishman. Together they raised four children, Stephanie, Shawn (Old), Richard, and Robert.
He was an accomplished bricklayer and builder, learning the trade from his father and grandfather, who owned and operated his business, Masonry Repairs Contracting for over 20 years on the West Coast and throughout the Midwest. John had an affinity for all genres of music, and especially loved Bob Weir, CSNY, Fleetwood Mac, the Beatles, Neil Young, Amy Winehouse, Cee Lo Green, the Doors, and so many more. He was quick with a joke, knew the meaning of hard work, fairness, art, and enjoyed the simple pleasures of life like the sun setting, the moon shining, waves crashing, and everything in between. He saw the good in people and never met a stranger. He greeted new and old friends with a smile and a handshake that included a secret slip of a Werthers candy or two. John also loved animals. He loved watching and feeding birds, and enjoyed time with his many dogs and cats, who held a special place in his heart. For several years he and his wife (Den) ran a successful pet care business, Fussbudget Pet Pampering. He loved NASCAR, especially Dale Earnhardt (RIP), IndyCar and Formula One racing, and enjoyed his wife’s surprise gift to drive the famous Brickyard (Indy 500) Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, IN.
John made Den laugh every day of his life, and was a complete joy to be with. Den feels very honored to have been his wife of over 22 years, with the blessing of a respectful, loving, and blended family. Their love was a dream come true and never wavered. John shared many friendships throughout his life. He had a unique bond with Paul (“The Original Mr. Werthers”) and PeeWee Riggs, Charlene and Greg (“his other brother”) Alewel.
John is survived by his soulmate and devoted wife, Denise Heishman, children Stephanie (his “favorite daughter”) of Washington D.C., Shawn (Brandy) Old of Kansas City, MO, Richard of Lenexa, KS, Robert of Chicago, IL; granddaughters Charlotte Heishman, Sydney Heishman, Astrid “Bunnie” Old, and Fenja Old; his beloved Aunt Avie (Ned) Eichler and family of Tiburon, CA, and Aunt Betty (Howard) Ballash and family of Medford, OR; sisters Linda (Jon Needs) Heishman-Needs of State Center, IA, Julie (John) Fennig of Indianapolis, IN, Debra (Roger) Mason of Milwaukee, WI, Marla “Jo” (Duane) Heishman of Lamar, CO; and many beloved nephews and nieces, and countless dear friends. John is also survived by his loyal cats Francesca, Tippi, Bob, and Harvey.
John is preceded in death by his grandparents; parents, Charles, Ruth, Warren DeVries, and Charlene (Grove) DeVries; brother Duane; brother in-law John (Fennig); and beloved friend Paul Riggs. Per his wishes, John was cremated and asked that there be no funeral. The family will have a private Celebration of Life at a later date. In your hearts and minds, please remember the fond memories of the relationship you and he had.
The Heishman family sends their heartfelt gratitude and appreciation to all the kind doctors and nurses who gave John care for the past three years including Dr. Sauer, of the Kansas University Cardiology Center; Dr. Pendergrass, of the Kansas University Oncology Center, and their many remarkable staff members, as well as Compassionate Care Hospice of Kansas City, and numerous others that John Loved and helped him fight his battle.
Sister in law ,Milwaukee ,Wisconsin
We are all so sorry for your loss. Our wonderful memories of Johnny will pull us through. His wonderful sense of humor will be what I miss the most. Hugs to den, stephanie, shawn, brandy rich and rob.
John & Den's aunt ,Tiburon ,California
No one can replace a John Heishman - a funny, smart, loving, kind man. Our extended family has lost a one-of-a kind
member, who brought us all so much joy and happiness.
My heart goes out to his beloved Denise, sons Rich & Rob &
Shawn & daughter Stef. May you rest in peace, my friend.
Friend ,LeClaire ,Iowa
My deepest sympathies go out to Den and her family. John was one of a kind and will never be forgotten.
The love he had for his wife and family was second to none.
You will be missed by all that had the privilege of knowing you. ❤️
Friend and old neighbo ,Rhinelander ,Wisconsin
Wonderful memories of happy times on the 16th floor of The View! Best neighbors ever! Grateful our paths crossed. My deepest sympathy to Dee and the family. He fought so hard and for so long. I can’t even imagine how much you will miss him.