Doug was educated in Lincoln (NE) Public Schools, graduating with the Class of 1977 at Lincoln Northeast High School where he was a Hall of Fame athlete earning nine varsity letters and all-state team recognition in basketball. He graduated from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 1982 with a Bachelor of Science in Agronomy. He spent 42 years working as a soil scientist in various capacities, including federal service with the Bureau of Indian Affairs in New Mexico, the Soil Conservation Service in Nebraska and Missouri, and the Corps of Engineers in Kansas City.
Family was central to Doug. His kind and gentle nature made him an attentive husband and devoted father. He was so proud of his two children, and will be lovingly remembered for his everlasting “coaching” – guidance and instructions. He was always up for having fun and enjoyed many long-lasting friendships throughout his life. A skilled cook, Doug was known for his range with meats from pan-fried panko-crusted tilapia to grilled steak to smoked brisket and salmon. His kids always looked forward to his skillet breakfast and milk and cookies. Doug loved all kinds of music, especially live performance and improvisation. He was a life-long fan of the Grateful Dead.
Doug married Andrea Catherine Neddermeyer on June 25, 1988, in Schleswig, IA. In addition to Andrea, survivors include a daughter, Lauren Thorson and husband Jody of Kansas City, MO; a son, Charles Berka and wife Natalie of Tulsa, OK; mother, Donna Berka of Lincoln, NE; three siblings: Reg Berka and wife Angie of Houston, TX; Diane Mayberger and husband John of Crete, NE; and Brad Berka and wife Deb of Lincoln, NE; three beloved grandchildren: Clark, Caroline, and Jack. He was preceded in death by his father Melvin Berka, and a sister, Karen Lind-Olson.
The family will receive friends from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Monday, February 13, 2023, at Meyers Funeral Chapel in Parkville. Funeral services will be 11:00 a.m. Tuesday, February 14, 2023, at Bethel United Church of Christ, 4900 NE Parvin Road, Kansas City, MO. A private family burial will be held at a later date. Doug’s family requests that memorial contributions be made to Harvesters.