William J. Dierker William J. Dierker, 90, departed this life on August 5, 2019 after several years of declining health.
Bill was born June 6, 1929 in Shawnee, OK, and adopted shortly thereafter by Bud and Freda Dierker. Taking up piano at an early age, he would go on to share a wondrous musical talent for nine decades.
He graduated from Shawnee High School in 1947 and subsequently served tours in the Oklahoma National Guard and four years in the United States Navy, the latter in combat duty at sea aboard USS Helena during the Korean War.
Mustering out in 1954, Bill enrolled at Oklahoma City University and joined the Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity, where a fellow member and future brother-in-law introduced him to his big sister, Lucy Ann Bradley.
Bill and Lucy married on November 24, 1955 and soon produced sons, Charlie, Tom, Larry and Bill. The family lived in northwest Oklahoma City through 1968, spent three years in Topeka, KS, and relocated permanently to Tulsa in 1971.
Musical endeavors framed Bill's entire life. His keyboard virtuosity closed innumerable piano and organ deals during a long sales career with the Jenkins Music Co. in Oklahoma City and Topeka, and with the Saied Music Co. and Conn Keyboards in Tulsa.
He also became a fixture on the live music scene, playing keyboards over the years for big band leaders, Floyd "Red" Rice in Oklahoma City, Sammy Pagna in Tulsa, and on numerous combos. He also played longtime solo gigs entertaining diners at the Shadow Mountain Inn, Candlewood Club, Oaks Country Club and Cedar Ridge Country Club in Tulsa.
In later years, Bill expressed an enduring love for his adopted hometown in co-writing, performing and recording the original composition, "My Tulsa".
Bill was preceded in death by his parents, Bud and Freda Dierker; his birth parents, Roy Supplee and Ernestine Glied Supplee Kendall; sister, Ruth Wangsgard; and brothers, Clarence Supplee and Bob Barnes.
Survivors: wife of 63 years, Lucy; sons, Charlie (Kathy) of Fort Worth, TX, Tom and Larry (Janna) of Tulsa, and Bill of Catoosa; grandsons, Joey (Ashley), John (Ellie), Ben, Michael and Ryan (Megan); granddaughters, Caroline (Andrew) and Logan; great grandsons, Charlie, Henry and Theo; and great granddaughters, Khloe and Haiden.
A Memorial Mass is scheduled for 1 p.m. on Friday, August 9, at the Church of the Madalene, 3188 E. 22nd Street, Tulsa, OK 74114.