Gregory W. (Greg) Stengem, 63, of Austin, Texas, passed away Wednesday, Nov. 21, 2012, following complications while receiving treatment for lung cancer. Greg was born April 5, 1949, in Havre, Mont., son of William Murray and Lorraine Jean Stengem. He married Sally Halverson on Jan. 16, 1971. In 1968, Greg embarked on a successful career in the railroad industry.
From 1968 to 1994, he held various operating and management positions for Burlington Northern, including train dispatcher, trainmaster, assistant terminal superintendent and superintendent of transportation.
In 1995, he was appointed assistant general manager of Burlington Northern Santa Fe’s Network Operations Center in Fort Worth, Texas, and a year later to assistant vice president of coal operations, followed by assistant vice president of transportation and vice president of Burlington Lines.
In 1997, he was appointed vice president of service design and systems and in 1999 to vice president safety, training and operations support, the position he held until his retirement in 2005. Throughout his 37 years of railroad service, he was the recipient of numerous industry awards from BNSF, the Association of American Railroads and the Chicago Belt Railway System recognizing his dedication to diversity and leadership. Greg was at the forefront of numerous technological and operational advances within the industry including a state-of-the-art Network Operations Center at BNSF in Fort Worth and the development and implementation of on-board positive train control to avoid human error train collisions. He will always be remembered by his co-workers, family and friends as a man who was dedicated fully to the task at hand, energetic yet humble, kind and generous, living his life to the fullest every day and expecting others to be able to have the opportunity to do the same. Greg also enjoyed traveling, golf, fishing and horse racing, especially when he had the opportunity to share those experiences with others.
He is survived by his wife of 41 years at the home in Austin; and his parents of Great Falls, Mont. He is also survived by his children, Jodi (Ramsey) Markus of Houston, Texas, Kathryn (John) Burnam of Austin, Texas, and Kevin (Sarah) Stengem of Fort Worth, Texas; his grandchildren, Jacob and Evan Markus, John III (Trey) and Tyler Burnam, and Thomas Stengem; his sisters, Karla (Gene) Aafedt of Anchorage, Alaska, Ann Janikula of Great Falls, Mont., Julie Stengem of Renton, Wash., Lisa (Bruce) Mohr of Libby, Mont., Kelly Stengem of Missoula, Mont. ; brothers, Curtis Stengem of Fort Worth, Texas and Christopher (Danell) Stengem of Keller, Texas.
Greg was cremated at his request. A memorial service to honor his life will be held at 2 p. m., Sunday, Dec. 9, 2012, at Weed-Corley-Fish Lake Travis Chapel, 411 Ranch Road 620 South, Austin, Texas 78734.
Memorial contributions may be made to Safe Place of Austin, P. O. Box 19454, Austin, TX 78760; Texas Children’s Hospital, 6621 Fannin Street, Houston, TX 77030; Feed The Children, P. O. Box 36, Oklahoma City, OK 73101 or the American Red Cross, 2218 Pershing Drive, Austin, TX 78723.
Arrangements by Weed-Corley-Fish Lake Travis (512) 263-1511. Obituary and guestbook are available online at www.wcfish.com