Andrew “Andy” Bailey enjoyed helping people grow professionally and spiritually.

The chief operating officer of Lueder Construction worked with construction management programs at the University of Nebraska at Omaha and Iowa Western Community College. He also loved taking his seven children along when he was training hunting dogs on his acreage near Blair.

“Andy gave a lot of the (college) students internships,” said Susan Bailey, his wife of 30 years. “He loved working with the kids.”

Bailey, 58, died Friday in hospice care following a three-year battle with cancer. A funeral service will be at 11 a.m. Thursday at West Hills Church, 3015 S. 82nd Ave., with memorials suggested to Impact India Ministries.

A 1979 Westside High graduate, Bailey earned a degree in construction management from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 1983. He met his wife while in Virginia Beach, Virginia. The couple moved in 1989 to Omaha, where he joined Lueder Construction.

“He brought me to the Good Life,” Susan Bailey said with a laugh. “I was living on the beach, so I thought that was the good life, but I’m here now.”

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Brad von Gillern, the CEO of Lueder Construction, said Bailey started with the company as a project manager. He was a dedicated employee who had a positive impact on many lives, von Gillern said.

“He focused on others, even while battling his own health issues,” von Gillern said. “He never complained or asked for sympathy. He had more grit and toughness than anyone I know. His faith was quiet and personal, but his trust was in Jesus, so I know that he is celebrating his homecoming now.”

Bailey’s wife gave birth to the couple’s first child, but they lost a second during the pregnancy. They began thinking about adoption.

“Andy always had a heart for orphans, and when we lost that child, we said, ‘Why don’t we just adopt?’ ” Susan Bailey said. “We adopted six children internationally.”

Four of the children are from India, with one each from Romania and Ethiopia. All of the children became involved in their father’s dog-training business as a way to get them “away from electronics,” their mother said.

“We had just gotten two new pups that we thought Andy would be training,” his wife said. “The kids got together and decided that they are going train them. They said, ‘We’re going to train them the way he would.’ ”

In addition to his wife, Bailey is survived by his children, Brandon, Megan, Briann, Grace, Luke, Shay and Bethany, all of rural Blair; a brother, Scott Bailey of Omaha; and three grandchildren.

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kevin.cole@owh.com, 402-444-1272

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