Steven Douglas Deemer
(1960 - 2013)

Steven Douglas Deemer
Nickname: Doug

Pennsylvania, United States of America
February 27, 1960

Arizona, United States of America
June 10, 2013

In Loving Memory of Steven Douglas Deemer (Doug).

Doug was born February 27, 1960 in Ellwood Cit, PA. to Gerald and Sally Deemer. He moved to Mesa, AZ with his family when he was 7 years old. Doug served in the Army National Guard from May 16, 1982 to June 27, 1990.

Doug had a quiet strength and was a man of great integrity. Doug could be counted on to do what he said he would do. Doug had a wonderful sense of humor and a spirit of giving. He was a loving husband, son, brother, friend, as well as a devoted and supportive father.

Doug's life was too short but those who were touched by him understood that the quality of Doug's existence far exceeds the quantity of time in which he lived.

Doug is survived by his wife Ruth Deemer, father Gerald Deemer, mother Sally Deemer, son Benjamin J. Deemer, daughter Amanda Deemer, step-son Danny Winkler, adopted son Benjamin M. Deemer, brother Glenn Cameron Deemer, sister-in-law Jackie Deemer and his neices Brittany and Shelby Deemer.

Service held Saturday June 29th, 2013 at 11:00 am at Spring of Life Christian Church in Mesa, AZ. Service will be officiated by Kevin Carlson. Eulogy by Doug Deemer via audio recording.


Amanda Deemer (Doug's Daughter) - I was going to talk at my dad's funeral but unfortunately did not get the chance. Below is what I had planned on saying:

I had my dad for 30 years, 11 months and 2 days. I have not had a dad for the past 19 days. It’s hard to know what to say about my dad. It’s hard to believe that he is actually gone. We all knew that he was sick, but I had a very difficult time accepting that. I kept thinking that something would change and he would come out of it. I think I was in a great deal of denial, I would tell myself that he was dying but I didn’t really believe it. I wasn’t ready to lose him. I just couldn’t wrap my mind around it – that one day he would be gone and I would never see him again.

I remember listening to dad’s recorded eulogy after Levi died and thinking, “This isn’t my dad! Where are the Prodigy, Offspring and Jane’s Addiction songs?” I was surprised at how religious it was. I knew that he had faith but I never heard him talk about it so much. We talked about spirituality, art, philosophy, psychology and pretty much everything but the dad I knew was usually the one playing devil’s advocate, debating and challenging me throughout the conversation. Or maybe he just knew me and knew what I needed from him. I remember the first song he played on his recording from my childhood. When I was little and had a bad dream he would put me back in bed and put that Jesus Christ Superstar tape in the tape player and play me that “Everything’s Alright” song. He would alternate between “Everything’s Alright” and “The Lion Sleeps Tonight” and even as an adult I have listened to those songs to comfort myself when I have needed to.

After listening to dad’s recording today, I have to say, he was too hard on himself and didn’t give himself the credit that he deserved. He was an amazing father. He was, in my opinion, the best father a daughter could ask for and he took his role as a father seriously, but not too seriously. Although he would say that he was our father, not our friend, he felt more like a friend to me. I had a very special relationship with my dad. My dad was always there for me, he was my rock, and I have always depended on that. He always knew what to do and I always knew that I could count on him. I feel lucky and proud to have had him for a father. Dad always seemed to know what to do. If I had a problem, I would just ask dad what I should do about it or I would say to myself, “What would dad do?” and that has always helped me figure out what to do…however, there were also times that the right thing to do for me was to do the opposite of what dad would do. For example, would dad stop and pick up a stray dog on the side of the road? Probably not. Would I? Of course I would.

My dad loved a good prank, he was a trickster by nature he found humor in almost everything. He taught me how to have a sense of humor about things, no matter how sad or awkward or embarrassing and to not take life too seriously. My dad was one of the funniest people I have ever known. I was trying to think of some funny things to share with you all about dad but the majority of things I could think of were inside jokes that we had that probably wouldn’t make much sense. My dad had this weird ability to make me laugh even when I didn’t want to. No matter what was going on or how mad or upset I was about something and how hard I tried to not laugh, dad would somehow still get me laughing.

So you guys may or may not know this about me but I have always been a daddy’s girl. When I was a kid, my dad and I had a standing weekly father-daughter date. Once night a week my dad would take me out to do something – just the two of us. Our dates consisted of things like going to a movie or dinner or the arcade, walking around the mall or the art supply store, doing donuts in empty parking lots, or taking the guns out and doing some target practice. Every week, on the way to do whatever it was we were going to do, dad would stop at the gas station and get me a strawberry pop, and then at some point during the date he would hide the strawberry pop and I would have to look around for it until I found it. I would say, “Dad, why do you always hide the strawberry pop?” And dad would tell me that the boy always hides the strawberry pop on dates. And I believed that was what people did on dates for an embarrassingly long time. So long, in fact, that I was disappointed when I went on my first real date with a boy because there was not even a mention of strawberry pop. One particularly powerful father/daughter date that stands out to me was when we were running late and missed the movie we were going to go see. We had like an hour to kill before the next show time so we were going to get something to eat. On the way we saw a down-and-out homeless woman on the corner of the street. Dad rolled down his window and asked her if she was hungry. She ended up coming to McDonalds with us and dad got her a bunch of food and then we dropped her back off where we had picked her up and went to see the movie. I remember that night well because it made such a big impact on me. The lesson I learned that night was an appreciation and understanding of the fact that: There but for the grace of God, go I.

My dad was selfless and he sacrificed so much for me and my brother. We were poor when we were kids my dad worked three jobs and a lot of nights he wouldn’t get home until late. Looking back now, as an adult, I realize that he must have been exhausted all the time, but we never would’ve known. He never took any of his frustration, stress, anger or sadness out on us kids. He always made himself available to us no matter what was going on. He always had time for us and played with us and supported us in our various endeavors. My dad put our needs and wants before his own. I was an adult when I found out about the extent of the hardships that dad had gone through in his life, and I admire his strength during those times, because as a kid, I had no idea. He never burdened us kids with the things and situations he struggled with. Dad was kind, thoughtful and generous. He was slow to anger and never wanted to hurt anyone. In fact, I know of several occasions that he went to great lengths and exhibited great will power and swallowed his pride in order to avoid hurting another person.

We used to live in a house that was right down the street from our grandma. It was not even a block but there were no streetlights and at night, in the dark, it felt like miles. I remember walking down to my grandma’s house at night and dad would stand in our driveway.
I would yell, “Can you see me, dad?”
And he would yell back “No.”
Me: “I can’t see you either!”
Dad: “Well I’m still here…”
A few more steps, “Dad are you there?”
A few more steps, “Dad, are you still there?”
Me: “Ok, well don’t go inside until I get there!”
Dad: “I wont.”
Some variation of this exact conversation would go on until I got to my grandma’s front door and then I would yell, “I made it, dad!”

This ritual didn’t end in my childhood, it continued well into adulthood. Anytime I had to do something or go somewhere that made me a little nervous I would have dad stay on the phone with me until I was done. That job was passed on to Levi when I met him and then back to dad after Levi died. There were times after Levi died that I would get really scared and I would call dad. I would just keep him on the phone, I would be crying, not talking, but every once in a while I would say, “Are you still there, dad?” And of course, he was.

I have always felt like my dad accepted me for me and for the most part, he understood me. Even when he didn’t understand me, he would always make an effort to understand me, he would listen to my explanations and thought processes for why I did the things I did and even if he didn’t agree with all of my choices, he was willing at least to try to understood them. I was very close with my dad. I could talk to dad about anything. My dad always supported me in what I wanted to do, he believed in me and appreciated me for who I was. He bought me my first painting set and built a little studio for me in the garage, which I loved to use after dad and I watched Bob Ross on Saturday mornings. He bought me my drum set the year that I wanted to be a drummer. Keep in mind; I said we were poor plus dad was very frugal so these things were really big deals. He got his belly button pierced with me because I was too nervous to do it by myself. He went with me the first time I ever went skydiving. He let me pick out the colors at the top of the sword on his eagle tattoo when I was five years old – I picked hot pink and purple and dad went with those colors without any hesitation.

My dad played an integral part in raising me and my brother. He taught us to stand up for ourselves and the things we believe in, to think critically, to do what we wanted as long as we were willing to accept the consequences, to do the things that have to be done, to be independent, to be strong and to be confident. I have a secure sense of self and self-worth in large part due to my dad. Dad taught me to be true to myself, even if that meant going against other people’s needs, wishes, rules or expectations. Dad always told me that brutal authenticity was better than spineless amicability. I know who am I because my dad allowed space and support for me to explore who I was from a very early age. He taught me that my uniqueness and individuality was something to be appreciated and nurtured. He taught me many lessons in life through example and experience. And as I grew up, and overcame challenges and life's obstacles my Dad was always by my side. Yet, when I did succeed he stood back and took no credit.

I am so grateful to my dad for giving me a life full of love, support and friendship. I have been lucky enough to see eye-to-eye with him and look up to him at the same time. My dad was a man that I respected as much as I loved – and I loved him a lot. Part of me is afraid of what life is going to be like without my dad to turn to and another part of me feels like I am going to be OK because of my dad’s influence on my life, the way he raised me, and because of all the life lessons he taught me along the way. I told dad a few months ago that I was scared of what will happen when he dies and he told me that he wasn’t worried about it because he did a good job with me. Whatever it is that I end up doing with my life, I just hope I live a life that my dad would be proud of. Dad was always right there for me, for all of us. That’s the kind of guy he was. He walked through his life with dignity and grace and although he may be physically gone, he is still very much here with me. He’s in my heart and he’s in my soul. He was my dad, and for that I will always be grateful.

Guest Book Wall (What is this?)

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Guest Book (25 entries)
I miss you so much dad. Its hard to believe that you have been gone for two years. It seems like yesterday that we were at your FUNeral. I love you forever.
Amanda Deemer (daughter)
June 10th, 2015
Dear Deemer family,
I have just heard about Doug's passing. I wish I would have known sooner.
I worked with Doug at the Arizona Department of Education.
He always came to me as an HR professional. I also spoke with him frequently, I always thought of him like a dad. I really wish I would have found out sooner.
I remember he could always be counted on. I asked him frequently to go above and beyond his Career and Technical Education role, to help with events and I always trusted having him as part of our event coordinations.
I hope Benjamin is well, I think of him frequently, and wish we would have spoken when he left ADE. Benjamin (aka Benji) it has been too long since we have talked. Please call me so we can catch up 623-229-6981. Deemer family, I know you will carry on your dad's legacy and traditions.
Stephanie Denny
Stephanie Denny (Co-worker)
February 18th, 2015
I miss you, dad.
Amanda Deemer (Daughter)
September 10th, 2013
Dear Ruth and Family, Words cannot express, nor emotions convery, how sorry I am for your loss of Doug. As my executive assistant, Doug was my right hand at work, and my confident on countless occasions, conversations and issues. Doug would always research and give me a straight answer to any question or task, and my life was made so much easier by trusting Doug to handle my daily and travel schedules, my deadlines on critical issues and information, and to be my source of information on the myriad of issues that I did not have time to address on a daily basis. I admired his convictions, and always enjoyed our debates when we saw things from a different perspective. He never stopped talking about how proud he was of his family, including foster children. Ruth, it was always so fun to see how he so thoroughly enjoyed your cooking and the 'treats' that he would come to work with; and was willing to share with me and others. He will be sorely missed, but even more importantly, will be remembered and admired by those who had the pleasure of meeting and working with him. Please know that the entire Deemer family will be in my and Sara's thoughts and prayers in the days, weeks, and months to come. My life was made better because Doug Deemer was a part of it. Milt Ericksen.
Milt Ericksen (Supervisor)
June 28th, 2013
Doug - I have missed your wit and wisdom. You always made me smile. I know I'll see you again in heaven. Blessings and peace on your family...until you all meet again. --Kathy
Kathy Bowersock (Friend/Co-worker)
June 26th, 2013
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"I miss you dad. I’m feeling lost, scared, and confused right now. I wish I could talk to you. You always knew what to do."
Amanda Deemer
June 11th, 2019
"Happy birthday dad! I miss you..."
Amanda Deemer
February 27th, 2014
"There are no words to truly comfort you and the other family for your loss. I do know that God is in control and that Doug loved Jesus. Doug is no longer sick or suffering. Death is not a period but a comma. Love and prayers from Jackie"
Jackie Ramsey
June 23rd, 2013
"I'm so sad for Ruth and the family. I had the pleasure of attending a thanksgiving dinner with the family and even though he was ill, he still had a smile for us that day. He will be missed by all. God Love us all."
Mary Hayes
June 17th, 2013
"This may be a repeat. Just wanted to let you know that you are in our prayers, and so sorry for your lost. Love and Hugs God Bless you all Ruth and Bill"
Ruth Shira/Jacquemin
June 17th, 2013
"Sorry for your loss, to all of the family in your time of mourning, God Bless you all. Bill and Ruth"
Ruth Shira/Jacquemin
June 17th, 2013
"I love you so much dad. I hope that wherever you are there are plenty of baja's for my faja!"
Amanda Deemer
June 13th, 2013


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