Roger Wayne Wischmeier

Roger Wayne Wischmeier, College Professor, Organist, Choirmaster, champion of congregational music and authority on the organ chorale prelude as used in worship, has died at age 78. Roger died at 4:00 a.m. on Friday, January 31, 2014.  He was under the care of Kansas City Hospice & Foxwood Springs, Raymore, MO,  where he had been a resident for the past 4 ½ years. During his lifetime, he resided in Iowa, Nebraska, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Kansas, and Missouri.

Roger was born in Sioux City, Iowa to Bernie and Ellen (Zulauf) Wischmeier on August 12, 1935. He was the eldest of three sons, followed by Richard and Paul. He graduated from Wilcox High School in Nebraska. He received both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in music from the University of Nebraska, Lincoln and a doctorate in church music and organ performance from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, KY. Dr. Wischmeier’s career in music spanned more than 60 years in churches and colleges. He came to Kansas City in October of 1989. Roger was the Dean of the KC Chapter of American Guild of Organists in 1994-95. He was also an avid supporter of both the Carillon Guild and the Kansas City Theatre Pipe Organ Club.

Roger was married to Wilma L. Augsburger in 1958. She preceded him in death. The quality of his life was greatly deepened by her love. He is survived by daughter Barbara of Midland, TX and son, David of Elgin, IL, two brothers, Richard and his wife Elaine of Central City, NE and Paul and his wife Kaye of Hastings, NE, in addition to nine nieces and nephews: Eric, Brian, John and Christine Wischmeier, Ramona Busenitz, Aleda Berry, Lori Flory, Miriam Griffin, and Martha Showalter.

The visitation and funeral service will be held at the Raymore Christian Church, 500 Peace Drive in Raymore, MO. Visitation: Wednesday, February 5, 1-2 pm and Funeral: Wednesday, February 5, 2:00 pm, preceded by a prelude of organ music at 1:45 pm. Arrangements are entrusted to Missouri Funeral Care. Private interment will be at the Freewater Cemetery in Wilcox, NE.

Memorial gifts may be made to: Kansas City American Guild of Organists, Lynn Bratney, KCAGO Treasurer, 8137 North Kirkwood Avenue, Kansas City, MO 64151. Donations are tax deductible. The family extends their deepest gratitude to all who offered prayers and support.


  1. Mel Friesen on February 3, 2014 at 4:20 pm

    Arlene and I have fond memories of Roger and Wilma. We got married as students the same year as they did. May you cherish the good memories and Godly legacy. The passing of both Henry and Eldora Wiebe followed by Roger is erasing earthly contact with our former professors of music.

  2. Barb Hibma Peters and Wes Peters on February 3, 2014 at 8:01 pm

    Because of Mr Wischmeier I came to love the organ and organ music at Grace. He was an amazing instructor and I always looked forward to my weekly lessons. To this day my heart soars when I hear those majestic organ sounds that fill the cathedrals of Germany.

  3. Rosalie & Leland Flickinger on February 3, 2014 at 9:18 pm

    We remember well our years as students at Grace with Roger and Wilma as our instructors. I was a voice student of Wilma’s for 2 years and sang a number of duets with her when our trio was on a one week’s tour with her. It was on that tour that we had a suspicion that something was going on with her and Roger! We last visited with Roger at Henry Wiebe’s funeral. This is the end of an era for those of us at Grace while they were there. Blessings on you as a family.

  4. John Bartsch on February 4, 2014 at 1:26 am

    Mr. Roger Wischmeier was my first organ instructor at Grace Bible Institute in 1964-1966. He taught me so much in the art of playing the organ. Recently I came across an arrangement of “Praise Him, O Praise Him” by Mary Lou and William J. Reynolds for piano & organ. I have decided to play this at our 14th Annual Hymn Festival at Corban University here in Salem, Oregon.

  5. Verleen Baerg on February 4, 2014 at 12:13 pm

    Dr Wischmeier was my organ and music theory instructor at Grace. Though I was organist at my home church during my high school years, his teaching gave me the foundation in literature and technique, as well as the inspiration and challenge to continue my organ studies. I continued with organ at Tabor College and Wichita State University where I received my M.M. in organ performance. Thoughts & prayers for family.

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