Andrew A. Gall

Born: Thu., Feb. 7, 1918
Died: Fri., Oct. 8, 2010


Visitation

5:00 PM to 7:00 PM, Mon., Oct. 11, 2010
Location: - Not available -


Funeral Service

11:00 AM Tue., Oct. 12, 2010


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Andrew A. Gall

February 7, 1918October 8, 2010

  

Andrew Alton Gall, 92, of South Bend died at 6:45 p.m. Friday, October 8, 2010 in Healthwin Specialized Care Facility.  Andy was born Februuary 7, 1918 in Trenton, NJ to Andrew and Bertha (Raday) Gall who emigrated separately to the U.S. in 1907 and 1911 from Hungary.  They met and were married in Trenton in 1914 and had two sons.  The family eventually settled in South Bend in 1921. 

 

As a young boy Andy would occasionally help his older brother and amateur radio enthusiast, James E. Gall (1915-2006) locate radio tubes to help him advance his hobby which later grew into a great career for Jim as an Electronics Warfare Scientist.

 

Andy’s first job was as a newspaper boy for the South Bend News Times in the early 1930’s, a job that one day became momentarily exciting.  He recalled on the early morning of Sunday, March 27, 1932 he was picking up his newspapers near the St. Joseph County Courthouse just moments after the Purple Gang mobster Basil Banghart shot his way free from jail and left a stolen Thompson submachine gun on the courthouse lawn.  Andy witnessed two men retrieving the weapon and his curiosity in firearms was piqued.  In the late 1930’s and early 1940’s he became an expert pistol marksman and won several first place medals while on the South Bend Lathe pistol team. 

 

In his youth Andy was enthused with early aviation and followed it intently.  As an eleven year old he was fortunate enough to witness from Cartier Field at Notre Dame the Graff Zeppelin as it passed by on its 1929 trip around the world.  In the mid 1930’s he took a biplane ride in a Curtiss Condor with Clarence Chamberlin, the second person to cross the Atlantic Ocean just two weeks after Charles Lindbergh’s historic 1927 flight. 

 

He graduated from South Bend Central High School in 1935 then worked as a machinist for South Bend Lathe and later for the Studebaker Corporation, Curtiss-Wright Corporation and the Goodyear Tire Corporation in Akron, OH.  He retired as a Computer Numerical Control Turret Lathe Operator in 1983 from Dodge Manufacturing in Mishawaka.

 

Andy served in the U.S. Navy during World War II as a Fireman First Class Motor Machinists Mate.  He attended the University of Illinois in Champaign, IL where he studied diesel mechanics.  He helped keep the tugboats running in San Diego and San Francisco and handled large munitions bound for the Pacific Theatre.  He was stationed in San Francisco at the end of the war.  On September 17, 1945 in San Francisco he married Pearl R. Grabarek who passed away May 8, 1993. 

 

He was an avid reader, an engineer at heart, loved the sciences and followed the space program closely for many years.  He was fortunate enough to witness firsthand both a Saturn V and a Space Shuttle launch. 

 

Andy could display a cantankerous façade when he deemed that the occasion required it but in truth he was one of the kindest, most honorable men ever produced by the “Greatest Generation”.  He was a member of Memorial Presbyterian Church, South Bend.  He was a proud Freemason and he always treated his fellow man with dignity and respect.  He would often help friends, family and even strangers who needed technical assistance.

 

His horticultural knowledge, expertise and love of growing fruit trees combined many years ago into the most rewarding hobby of winemaking…long before it became “trendy”.

 

A son, Fredrick, and a granddaughter, Emily, survive Andy as well as lifelong friends Jo Johnson, the Becky and Greg Johnson families, all the good people he had the privilege of meeting in this world who are still with us, and many wonderful neighbors.

 

Funeral services will be held at 11:00 a.m. Tuesday, October 12th in the Welsheimer Family Funeral Home North, 17033 Cleveland Rd.  Committal services and burial will follow in Highland Cemetery.  Friends may call Monday, October 11th from 5 until 7 p.m. in the funeral home.  In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the American Diabetes Association, 30 North Michigan Avenue, Suite 2015, Chicago, IL, 60602.  Family and friends may leave e-mail condolences at www.welsheimer.com.

Charitable donations may be made in Andrew's memory to the following organization:

American Diabetes Association
http://www.diabetes.org
330 Congress St., 5th Floor, Boston, MA 02210
Tel: 617 482 4580

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Mary Velardi
   Posted Mon October 11, 2010
Uncle Andy was always so cheerful and full of encouragement to all of us. It has been over 30 years since I last saw him but I do remember the beautiful fruit trees in the backyard. I regret not being able to attend his funeral but know he is resting peacefully with loved ones.

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