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Valerie Golueke (center) and her children at one of the first Peter J. Golueke Memorial Lectureships at GBMC.

Family Honors Beloved GBMC Surgeon and Father with Naming

July 29, 2022
Peter J. Golueke, MD, was a beloved vascular surgeon at GBMC for 21 years, his heart and compassion for patients extending well beyond the Vascular Surgery Associates practice he co-established with Dr. Roger E. Schneider in 1989.

Since his death in February 2011, Dr. Golueke’s wife and four children have been keeping his memory alive. From an educational lectureship to an annual golf tournament to philanthropy, the spirit of their late father and husband lives on in the memories of those who participate in these endeavors.

And when The Promise Project is complete, a permanent installment of Dr. Golueke will remind patients that, at GBMC, they are being cared for with the same compassion and skill he brought to his practice.

“Dad left his mark at GBMC just by being him,” Geoff Golueke said. “Everybody had the utmost respect for Dad and his name at GBMC will obviously live on forever. But to be given the opportunity to put his name on a room, that solidifies his seat, in my mind.”

Geoff’s sister, Erin Golueke, helped raise more than $100,000 as a senior in high school, including hosting a cupcake fundraiser, to establish an annual educational lectureship for physicians at GBMC in honor of their dad.

Geoff has taken his legacy-building project to the green. On August 15, Geoff and the Golueke family will host the 12th and final Peter J. Golueke Foundation Golf Tournament at Hayfields Country Club. By matching or exceeding proceeds from the previous year, they will be halfway to naming a room in the new inpatient facility currently being constructed as part of The Promise Project.

“Dad always gave back to the community, and, when he passed away, this tournament was an opportunity for me to carry that on,” Geoff said. “To be able to raise the amount of money that we’ve raised has been fantastic. In these final two years, we wanted to put the proceeds toward GBMC and The Promise Project to leave his mark with the hospital.”

“He decided to practice at GBMC because he loved the way GBMC treated him, and he loved the patients there,” Valerie Golueke said of her late husband. “He had options of being at other hospitals for this practice, and he chose to be at GBMC because of the relationship he had with them. He had an affection for the hospital and the people there.”

Dr. Golueke stopped practicing medicine in December 2010 when doctors discovered the brain tumor that would eventually take his life. He spent time receiving treatment at GBMC before it was recommended he move to different facilities to receive more specialized care.

“GBMC cares more about their patient than they do about their dollar, in my mind, which is very important when a hospital is taking care of somebody,” Valerie said. “It’s our local hospital. It’s a wonderful hospital that cares for patients and that takes of the community. I think most people that have experienced GBMC have been very happy that I know of. I haven’t heard anything bad about GBMC.”

Though some memories the Goluekes hold of GBMC can be heartbreaking to recall, there were many happy memories as well, ones that remind them of how GBMC was an extension of their family.

Geoff recalls walking the halls with his father and shadowing Dr. Golueke’s partner for a high school project. And the whole family will never forget Dr. Golueke’s secretary serving as the Tooth Fairy and writing letters to the children when they lost teeth. Supporting The Promise Project and honoring Dr. Golueke on one of the new patient rooms is a homecoming.

“It was time to give to GBMC,” Valerie said. “When this project came up, we thought it was perfect. Peter must have been knocking on our brains. Naming a room in the new inpatient facility is a good way to show he cared about this place.”
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