Bernhard E. Halbig of Sheboygan Falls was a hard-working man who loved God, his family and community.
He valued education, often telling family members that knowledge was one thing no one could ever take from them. Science and math were the subjects that most intrigued him, and he could discuss in depth everything from politics to football.
"He was the smartest man I've ever known," his daughter Kris Halbig Ziehm said. "He never went to college — although he wanted to — but he never stopped learning. Everything he did, he learned from."
Mr. Halbig died Thursday, Dec. 12, at Pine Haven Residential Care Facility in Sheboygan Falls. He was 90.
A lifelong resident of Sheboygan Falls, he was born on Feb. 2, 1923, to Arthur and Anna Moschko Halbig.
He graduated from Sheboygan Falls High School, then enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps during World War II, serving in the Pacific Theater.
After returning to Sheboygan Falls, Mr. Halbig worked at the family apple orchard on Crocker Avenue.
A machinist, he worked at Kohler General in Sheboygan Falls, retiring on May 1, 1992.
On Aug. 16, 1958, he married Frieda Lunow at St. Luke's Catholic Church in New York.
The couple built a home on Crocker Avenue, where Mr. Halbig created extensive gardens. He had a green thumb and was known for his beautiful flower beds and the large vegetable garden where he raised enough produce to feed his family year-round.
He was also a talented woodworker who made many of the built-in cabinets in his home, furniture and other items.
"He could do just about anything," his daughter said. "If something needed to be fixed, he could usually figure out a way to do it. If he needed a specialized item or tool, he would think about it for a couple days and usually could come up with a way to make it."
A religious man, Mr. Halbig was a lifelong member of St. Mary's Catholic Church in Sheboygan Falls — today Blessed Trinity Church. He served on the parish's Buildings and Grounds Committee for many years, was an usher and a member of the Holy Name Society.
He was also a member of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers.
Mr. Halbig is survived by his daughter Kristyn (Steve Ziehm) Halbig Ziehm of Port Washington, son Michael (Michelle) of Severn, Md., and two granddaughters, Nicole Ziehm and Natalie Truelove.
He is further survived by his sister Ann Knier of Plymouth.
He was preceded in death by his wife Frieda in August 2003, his parents, a brother Arthur and brothers-in-law Joseph Knier and Henry Lunow.
A Mass of Christian burial will be held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 21, at Blessed Trinity Catholic Church in Sheboygan Falls. Father Dan Lasecki will officiate.
Visitation will be at the church Saturday from 9 a.m. until the Mass.
Burial will be in the parish cemetery.
Memorial Masses and donations to the Sheboygan Falls Food Pantry are suggested.
Funeral arrangements are being handled through Wenig Funeral Home, Sheboygan Falls.
Published in Sheboygan Press on Dec. 18, 2013