Geoffrey Allen Lear was born on May 22, 1946 in Waterloo, Iowa, to Kurt and Lois (Webb) Lear. After an extended battle with a terminal illness, Geoffrey passed into Eternal Life on April 21, 2021 at Forest Ridge Senior Living facility in Woodland Park with his closest friend and confidant, Maxine Fawcett-Yeske, at his side. Geoffrey had a close circle of friends who were his loving family, including Ariel Downing, Bob Yeske, and a sweet little toy poodle named Ribbon.
Geoffrey’s life was lived in music, much of it of his own making. From a family of musicians, Geof was a flutist who later took up the double bass and electric bass and became accomplished at classical, jazz, and popular styles. He attended the University of Northern Iowa in Cedar Falls where he was inducted into Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia music fraternity. He earned a Bachelor of Music Degree along with a teaching certificate in 1976.
Geoffrey moved to Dayton, Wyoming, after college and taught Grades 6-12 Band and Choir at Tongue River Jr/Sr High. Branching out into broadcasting, Geof worked for KROE Radio (now Sheridan Media) in Sheridan, Wyoming from 1978-1984. He moved to Loveland, Colorado in 1984 where he was employed at KLOV Radio until he discovered a talent and affinity for band instrument repair, a skill he developed while working at Melody Maker Music. Geoffrey moved to Kirksville, Missouri, in 1997, accepting a position as Executive Director of the Kirksville Arts Association, where he performed outreach in the schools, coordinated numerous musical and fine arts events, and helped to establish the Kirksville Community Chorus, still a thriving organization over 20 years after its founding. While in Missouri, Geoffrey started his own business, G. Lear Band Instrument Repair, which became highly successful when he moved to Lincoln, Nebraska in 1999, partnering with Music-Go-Round and Star Music. Geoffrey was a proud member of the National Association of Professional Band Instrument Repair Technicians and enjoyed going to their national conferences and touring musical instrument factories.
Wherever he was, Geof was making music. He knew the classical repertoire particularly well, having performed in the Waterloo/Cedar Falls (IA) Symphony Orchestra, Sheridan (WY) Orchestra, Loveland (CO) Symphony Orchestra, Kirksville (MO) Community Orchestra, Quincy (IL) Symphony Orchestra, and Lincoln (NE) Civic Orchestra. After retiring to Woodland Park (CO), he performed in the Woodland Park Wind Symphony. Geof was a lifelong member of the American Federation of Musicians.
Geoffrey loved being outdoors. He recalled times exploring Devil’s Backbone State Park in Iowa with his parents and brothers. As an adult, he especially loved the mountains—the Snowy Range in Wyoming, the mountains near Juneau and Glacier Bay in Alaska; and the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, especially in Rocky Mountain National Park.
Geoffrey had a quick wit and a wonderful sense of humor. He was a good listener and a loyal friend who will be deeply missed.
Geoffrey is preceded in death by his parents, brothers Erich and Karl, and his niece Genevieve. He is survived by his brother Roger (Cindy) and several nieces and nephews.
A memorial gathering will be held at a later date. Memorials may be sent in Geoffrey’s name to the Woodland Park Wind Symphony and the University of Northern Iowa, College of Music in Cedar Falls.
Beloved Friend, may you rest in peace, and may your memory be a blessing to all who knew you.
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