Dressage Foundation Manager John Boomer Passed Away

Friday, March 26, 2021
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Message from the The Dressage Foundation - It is with our deepest sadness that we share the news of the passing of John Boomer with you, his beloved dressage community. As the son of Lowell Boomer (founder of USDF and The Dressage Foundation), John's entire life was entwined with the growth of dressage in the United States. He and his wife, Lynn, spent a dozen of their "retirement years" at the helm of The Dressage Foundation, tirelessly working to ensure the success of our sport. Countless riders have benefitted from the grants and programs that John helped establish and grow.

We honor his life and his legacy -- he will be missed. 

John F. Boomer died Sunday, March 21, at the age of 92 in Lincoln, Nebraska. John was born April 23, 1929 in Boston Mass. He was raised in Lincoln, attended the Lincoln Public Schools and graduated from the University of Nebraska with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration.

Later in his business life, he graduated from the R&R NewKirk fundraising course and the American Business Press Advanced Studies at Harvard University. John married Carolyn (Lynn) Bonnell Kunkel in 1954, and they celebrated their 66th wedding anniversary on June 13, 2020.

He is survived by his wife, three sons, John Jr. (Robin), David (Theresa) and Mark; grandsons, Adam (Rena) and their daughter, Noa a great-grandchild), Benjamin and sister-in-law Dorothy Kunkel. Family also includes former daughter-in-law, Cheryl. John was preceded in death by his parents, Lowell and Gladys Boomer, and brother, Jim. In his early business life,

John was employed with Boomer's Printing Company, Lincoln. He was associated for fourteen years with Business Week Magazine, McGraw-Hill, Inc., New York City. He served for ten years as Director of Advertising /Corporate Identity for United Technologies Corporation in Hartford, Connecticut, then the 18th largest corporation among the Fortune 500. John served for ten years as founding President of Good Samaritan Hospital Foundation in Kearney, Nebraska.

With his wife, Lynn, they formed “John Boomer Consulting Services, Inc.,” in Lincoln, providing counsel to clients in Fund Raising, Corporate Communications, Public Relations, Advertising and Advocacy. Active in civic affairs all of his life, John Boomer served as President of Lincoln’s Downtown Sertoma Club, President of Saint Paul United Methodist Church Foundation, President of the American Heart Association’s Nebraska Affiliate and President of the Kearney, Nebraska Area Chamber of Commerce. In 1993 he received the “Outstanding Professional Fund Raising Executive of the Year Award in Nebraska” from the National Society of Professional Fund Raising Executives (then NSFRE).

In his “retirement years,” John and his wife Lynn, served as the sole management staff of The Dressage Foundation, a national equestrian organization. John also served on the Board of Directors of The Buckle, Inc., a for-profit chain of national clothing stores, founded and based in Nebraska.

John’s military service consisted of serving as Master Sergeant, 34th Division Quartermaster Co. of the Nebraska National Guard, ROTC, while at the University of Nebraska, and as Second Lieutenant US Army Infantry, Fort Benning, Georgia. His fraternal activities were President of Alpha Delta Chapter of Delta Sigma Pi Fraternity, Master Mason, Scottish Rite, Shrine and Order of Eastern Star.

John was honored to be appointed as Admiral in the Great Nebraska Navy and as a Colonel in the Honorable Order of Kentucky Colonels – these appointments made by the Governors of their respective States.

A Private Remembrance Gathering 9:30 am Wednesday March 31 Nebraska Towers in Lincoln live-streaming of service on www.hammonsfs.com In Iieu of flowers memorials to the donor's charity of choice.