Former Gothenburg Resident: Daniel H. Peckham (1928-2016)
Daniel Hammond Peckham, 87, passed away on June 17th, 2016, in Fort Worth, Texas where he and his family had lived for nearly 30 years.
He was born on August 16th, 1928, on the family homestead near Gothenburg, Nebraska, to Hubert Bryan Peckham and Gladys Hammond Peckham, the third of four children. On the farm there was always work to do from dawn to dark. Dan had chores: cows to milk, wood to bring in, chickens to feed and water, eggs to gather, and the garden to weed.
School was just down the road at the one-room “Lone Star” school. Dan, with his family, became a Seventh-day Adventist during the war and Dan went on to Lincoln where he enrolled in the ministerial course at Union College.
Graduating in 1949, Dan took a teaching position in a church school in Arkansas. It was during those years that he met Billie Jean Lambert and they were married on June 8th, 1952.
He went almost directly from his honeymoon to boot camp as he was drafted to serve in the Korean War. He was stationed in Camp Pickett, Virginia, and assigned clerical work at headquarters.
In 1954, Dan and Billie returned to Lincoln where Billie completed her degree in education at Union College, and Dan took a Master’s degree in business at the University of Nebraska.
Dan returned to church work as business manager of Enterprise Academy in Kansas. In 1961 the family responded to a call to mission service in Korea. During this time Dan was ordained as a minister in the Seventh-day Adventist church.
The family came back to the states in 1966. They moved to Atlanta, Georgia where Dan audited church institutions in an eight-state region. Then he took an opportunity to return to the Midwest as treasurer of the church’s local administrative office in Kansas. In 1986, Billie accepted a position in Texas as a teaching supervisor and Dan worked in the business office of the Texas conference until retirement in 1990. For the next 13 years he audited churches in Kansas, Nebraska, Arkansas, Louisiana, New York, and Alaska. In 1993 after the church opened offices in Moscow, he worked in Russia for six months to organize their accounting records.
Despite being on the road a good deal, he still loved to travel. He took a cruise ship around Cape Horn, and also sailed between islands in the South Pacific. He stood on the Great Wall of China, and took his family to South Africa.
It should be noted that Dan always kept a close concern on his agricultural interests in Nebraska and was often at Gothenburg. He had always planned to be a farmer growing up and never completely removed his hand from the plow.
While he had a talent for handling money, that talent was always directed by a deep and sincere love for God. He was very generous with his own funds, especially to schools and colleges. His family prayers always closed with “Come quickly, Lord Jesus.”
He leaves his wife of 64 years, Billie Jean Peckham; his two sons, Kim Peckham and his wife Lori, and John Peckham and his wife Paula; a brother, John Peckham; two sisters, Margaret Lind and Mary Lou Peckham; five grandchildren, Holly Ward and her husband Stephen, Zach Fort and his wife Sarah, John Mark Peckham, Sheri-Ann Peckham, and Reef Peckham, and four great-grandchildren; along with other extended family.
Graveside services were held Saturday, June 25th, 2016, in his wife’s hometown of Bonnerdale, Arkansas.
Memorial Services will be held on Saturday, July 9, 2016, 5:00 p.m., at Blase-Strauser Memorial Chapel, 620 Tenth Street, Gothenburg, Nebraska, with Pastor Joseph Carty officiating.
Memorials may be directed to Union College, 3800 South 48th Street, Lincoln, NE 68506.