Harry A. Detwiler

Harry A. Detwiler, 90, of 216 Depot St., Ridgway, died peacefully on Jan. 21, 2011.He was born at home in Johnsonburg on May 25, 1920, son of the late John M. and Bessie (Stine) Detwiler.He married Audrey Geyer on Oct. 8, 1942. She preceded him in death on Sept. 21, 2004 after 61 years of marriage.He had resided in Ridgway for most of his life and was a member of St. Leo Catholic Church. Up until his death, he was active in the Regional Advisory Board and Governing Board of the Office of Human Services, most recently serving as president.He was a past Grand Knight and a 4th Degree member of the Knights of Columbus in Ridgway. He served over 50 years as an active member of the Ridgway Fire Department - Elk Hose Company, serving on the Fireman's Relief Fund Board and as president of the Ridgway Fire Department's Rescue Squad. He also was a retired usher at St. Leo Catholic Church and helped with many spaghetti dinners at the church. Most recently, he enjoyed the K of C Friday night card group.After graduating from the Johnsonburg High School, he joined the U.S. Army at the outbreak of the Second World War, receiving his Artillery Officer Commission at Fort Sill, OK. His unit served with bravery in the European Theater and received many commendations. He was involved in the operation immediately following the Normandy invasion and the Battle of the Bulge. After returning from Europe, he commanded Battery B in St. Marys for many years, retiring as a lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Army Reserve.After World War II, he attended Penn State and graduated under the GI Bill. He was then employed by Stackpole Carbon Company, retiring as their safety engineer in 1982.Surviving is one son, John Detwiler and his wife Anita of St. Marys; one daughter, Jane Griech and her husband Fred of Tallmadge, Ohio; seven grandchildren, Michele Matasich, Deanna Pratt, Michael Griech, David Griech, Kim Griech, Steven Detwiler and Mary Detwiler; eight great-grandchildren, Ben and Emily Pratt, Lindsay, Brandon, Alex and Allison Matasich, and Joshua and Evan Griech; one sister, Helen Detwiler; and several nieces and nephews. In addition to his wife and parents, he was preceded in death by three brothers, Gray Stine, Earl and John Detwiler; and one sister, Cora (Dot) Peterson.A Mass of Christian Burial for Harry A. Detwiler will be celebrated at St. Mary's Catholic Church in St. Marys (due to renovations at St. Leo Catholic Church) on Saturday at noon. Fr. Ross Miceli will officiate. Burial will follow in the St. Leo Cemetery.Military honors will be accorded by the Ridgway Servicemen's Burial Detail.Friends will be received at the Thompson Funeral Home in Ridgway on Friday from 5 to 8 p.m. A Wake Service will be held at the funeral home on Friday.Memorials, if desired, can be made to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Northern Chapter, Suite 103, Cleveland, Ohio 44128; the Visiting Nurses Association; or to St. Leo Catholic Church.