Obituary: Werner Anton Weidinger, German-Born U.S. Army Veteran
Weidinger was 84 years old.
April 14, 1928 - December 16, 2012
Werner Anton Weidinger , of Wilmette, passed away Sunday at the age of 84.
Beloved husband of Gerda for almost 51 years; loving father of Mark and Mathew; devoted brother of Mary Beth (Smith); dear uncle of many nieces and nephews and proud Opa of Alexa and Colin and John, Andrew, Cara, Hannah, Erin, Joseph, Michael and Clare. Preceded in death by parents Heinrich and Louise and brother Berthold.
Born in Obermohr, Germany, Werner emigrated to the North Shore in 1936, served in the U.S. Army after World War II, ran a successful TV repair business and was an active parishioner and volunteer at St. Joseph's Catholic Church for nearly five decades. He was loved and respected by all he met.
Visitation will be held Thursday, Dec. 20 from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m.
The funeral will be held Friday, Dec. 21 at 9:30 a.m. from Donnellan Family Funeral Home, 10045 Skokie Boulevard at Old Orchard Rd., Skokie, to St. Joseph’s Church, 1747 Lake Ave., Wilmette. Mass begins at 10:00 a.m.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to St. Joseph Catholic School, 1740 Lake Ave., Wilmette.
For additional funeral information call Donnellan funeral home at 847-675-1990 or visit www.donnellanfuneral.com.
Werner Anton Weidinger was born in April 1928, in Obermohr, a small town in southwestern Germany. His father Heinrich left the next year for Chicago in search of work to support his family, which then included Werner's mother Louise and his older brother Berthold. Times were tough here, too, and so Louise and the boys didn't follow Heinrich until 1936. Werner's sister Mary Beth was born a few years after that and his family ultimately settled into their longtime home in Skokie.
Werner went to Catholic grade and high school and after graduation in 1946 he and his buddies enlisted in the Army. He spent two years mostly in White Sands, New Mexico, working on projects that contributed to our country's defense throughout the Cold War. Years later, he displayed some of what he learned in the Army by frequently making egg-in-the-hole, a staple of the breakfasts he insisted on preparing each day for his family. After the Army, he moved back home and went to trade school, learning how to repair TVs and radios. That became his trade for the next 40 years, including during the roughly two decades when he ran his own TV repair business from home, often taking one of his boys along on house calls to customers.
Legend has it that, by the time young Gerda Weintz arrived in Chicago in early 1961, at age 32 Werner was fairly desperate to find a wife and settle down. He met Gerda 10 days after she arrived and pretty much didn't let her out of his sight until they were married in St. Peter's Church in Skokie on February 10, 1962. Their home in Wilmette bought in early 1963 was soon filled with two sons -- Mark born in August 1963 and Mathew born in April 1967. Gerda's mother often came from Germany, spending many happy months helping to raise the boys.
A man of great faith, Werner was baptized in the Church of St. John the Baptist, and had the foundation of his life -- his marriage to Gerda -- celebrated in St. Peter's Church. Just as appropriately, he spent his five decades as a husband and father as an active parishioner in St. Joseph's Church in Wilmette. A longtime usher and Knight of Columbus, he and Gerda also chaperoned boys choir trips to Philadelphia and Vienna, Austria, accompanying the late pastor Monsignor Meter and making many other lifelong friends. He and Gerda provided for the education of their sons at St. Joseph's School, as well as Loyola Academy, the University of Illinois and Georgetown University.
Werner was a friend to everyone he knew. He loved camping, gardening, good food, cold beer, a hearty laugh, watching golf on TV, complaining about the Cubs, and deriding politicians. He loved his wife Gerda most of all, and treasured the gentle care she showed especially in recent years.
His later years were enriched by the arrival of ten grandchildren -- Alexa and Colin and John, Andrew, Cara, Hannah, Erin, Joseph, Michael, and Clare. He and Gerda attended every First Communion of their grandchildren in Virginia, and delighted in having their grandchildren visit them in Chicago.
On Feb. 10, 2012, Werner and Gerda proudly celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary surrounded by family and a lifetime of friends.