JOHN L. STACEY, 83
John L. Stacey, who stood among the leading figures of Bellevue's civic life from the day he moved to the city in 1955, died Monday at age 83.
Stacey served 16 years as chief of the Bellevue Volunteer Fire Department, which he joined after moving to Bellevue from South Omaha.
He also represented Ward 1 on the Bellevue City Council for 21 years, becoming a regular presence as he walked the Olde Towne area.
When not discussing issues with ward residents, Stacey could often be found at the District 1 Fire Station, where he ensured that Fire Department vehicles were always polished and fully operational.
Bellevue was a small town of 3,000 people when Stacey arrived with his wife, Priscilla.
That same year, the couple welcomed their first child, John W. Stacey, who would eventually become both fire and police chief in Bellevue.
As a fire chief and City Council member, the senior Stacey played a leading role in creating modern Bellevue.
In addition to his service with the Fire Department and council, Stacey also served as a reserve police officer and as a Sarpy County sheriff's deputy.
Former City Councilman Dave Sanborn served with Stacey for most of Stacey's tenure on the council.
"What characterized John most of all was his dedication to the city," Sanborn said. "He gave his life to Bellevue — all those years on the volunteer fire department, so many years on the City Council.
"He was always driving around Olde Towne in that truck of his, seeing what was going on."
Stacey is survived by his wife, whom he married on Feb. 20, 1953. Stacey died on his 64th wedding anniversary.
He is also survived by son John W. and daughters Joyce Dunaway and Nancy Hewett.
Funeral services will be Friday at 10 a.m. at Bellevue Memorial Chapel.