Brian Wallace Goughnour, “Coach”, “Papa”, was born March 30, 1948, in Jefferson, Iowa, to Grace and Galen Goughnour. He was later joined by a sister, Marilyn, and a brother, Brent.
During his childhood, Brian was active in 4-H and his church youth group, and spent most summers vacationing in Minnesota. He grew up on a farm in Scranton, Iowa and attended Scranton High School where he played football, French horn in the band, and met his future wife, Stephanie, at the Greene County Fair. He graduated in 1966 and began his study in education at Iowa State University, finally earning his teaching degree at Westmar College in LeMars, Iowa.
While at Westmar, Brian married Stephanie Neary in 1969. They welcomed a son, David, in 1970 and 18 months later, a daughter, Kerrie.
Through the years, Brian taught everything but home economics—primarily world history and driver’s education—in the Lamoni, Deep River/Millersburg, Andrew, LeMars, and Shenandoah School Districts. He earned his Master’s and Specialist’s Degrees in Education at Northwest Missouri State University, and ultimately took on the role of Athletic/Activities Director at Shenandoah, Lewis Central and Keokuk School Districts.
As a dedicated educator, Brian was the ultimate mentor of youth—oftentimes seeing their potential long before anyone else. He taught and coached with patience and humor, and continued to remain in contact with many of his past students and student athletes.
Brian also coached junior high boys’ basketball and baseball; high school girls’ basketball, softball, volleyball, and track; and high school football. Early in his career, it was common for him to teach all day, drive the bus to an away game, coach the team, and drive them home. Highlights of his coaching career include two of his Andrew High School girls’ teams (basketball and softball) making it to the state finals; his 1976 Westmar College Coach of the Year award; and his 2006 induction to the Iowa Athletic Directors Association Hall of Fame.
Brian was a proud and active member of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks since 1980. He served as Exalted Ruler; earned the distinction of “Elk of the Year” in 1985 and again in 1997; and was awarded the Grand Exalted Ruler’s Commendation for Excellence in 2010.
After retiring from education in 2003, Brian started a part-time career with the Vernon Company, selling promotional products throughout the midwest. In spite of doubters who warned he was “too nice” for a sales job, his “never-met-a-stranger” personality led him to win multiple top sales awards, including Bronze and Silver Vernon Galaxy Awards.
Brian and Stephanie remained in Keokuk, Iowa until the end of 2013 when Stephanie retired and they moved north. Yes, people do that. The Minnesota lakes Brian grew up fishing called him back to Pine River, where he could fish AND golf.
Speaking of golf, Brian made his first hole in one on Sunday, January 15, 2006 on hole #8, with a driver, at Deer Run in Hamilton, IL. He made his second hole in one on Thursday, February 12, 2015 at the Links Course in Rotonda West, FL, again on hole #8, but this time with a 7 wood.
To know Brian was to know all the details of his latest meal and golf game. He loved grilling for family and friends, and jumped at every opportunity to smoke his world-famous ribs. When he wasn’t golfing, Brian enjoyed spending time with his children and grandchildren; fishing; watching westerns; cheering on the Hawkeyes, Huskers and Vikings; and keeping tabs on the locations featured in the show, “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives”.
Brian Wallace Goughnour passed away peacefully on October 9, 2018, while in care at St. Joseph’s Medical Center in Brainerd, MN, at the age of 70. He is survived by his wife of 49 years, Stephanie; his daughter, Kerrie; daughter-in-law, Mary; three granddaughters, Emma, Hope, and Ayla; sister, Marilyn (Al) Martyn; brother, Brent (Loretta) Goughnour; and many loving nieces, nephews and extended family. He was preceded in death by his parents, Grace and Galen Goughnour; and his son, David.
Family and friends may visit from 3:00 until 4:00 pm, Saturday, October 13 at Kline Funeral Home, 3042 MN-371, Pine River, MN 56474. A celebration of life service will begin at 4:00 pm, followed by a gathering at Bite’s Grill featuring BBQ pork and Brian’s favorite tater tots.
In lieu of flowers, Stephanie and Kerrie ask that you grab your best buddies and golf a round or two in honor of Brian. Be sure to take a selfie or a group photo and send it to Stephanie. This offer does not expire. Memorials may be sent to the family at 2101 White Pine Point Trail SW, Pine River, MN 56474.