Lt. Col. George H. Haertel 92, reported for his final call of duty in the early morning hours of August 18, 2013. He was born in Chicago, IL, on April 29, 1921, the youngest of three boys. He was preceded in death by his brothers, Ted and Victor. George joined the Army in 1938 and was assigned to Company B, 132nd Infantry. From 1942 until 1945, he served in the South Pacific, the Philippines, fighting in Guadalcanal and Bougainville. He separated from service in 1946 to continue his education at the University of Illinois where he received his BS in Journalism. After a short stint as a journalist at the Des Moines Register and Tribune, he returned to military service for the Korean War in 1951. While stationed in the Canal Zone in the early 1960's, he met and later married the love of his life, Mary Koller. George retired as Lt. Col. in 1967. Mary and George started their adventure in 1967, moving to Hawaii where George attended the University of Hawaii. They returned to the mainland in 1968 and moved to Tucson, AZ. George received his MPA in 1970 from the University of Arizona. Afterwards, George worked for the Tucson Police Dept. in Planning and Development until his retirement in 1976. George and Mary led a very full and active life together. They loved to travel, visiting China, Australia, New Zealand, Alaska, SE Asia and Antartica, to name a few. They enjoyed hiking with their dogs, particularly in the Catalinas. They were both ardent U of A Wildcat fans and huge proponents of education. They really, truly lived life to the fullest. George was preceded in death by Mary in 2003. George resided at The Forum in Tucson from 2008 until his death. He genuinely loved the residents and caregivers there. The family sends a BIG THANK YOU to all of those at The Forum who were a part of his last years. Also, the family would like to thank the wonderful caregivers from Homewatch Caregivers of Tucson who helped with George's care towards the end. George is survived by a few friends and many nieces and nephews. We all loved George and will remember him as being "the most interesting man in the world." There will be a gathering in George's honor at a later date. Arrangements by BRING'S BROADWAY CHAPEL, www.bringfuneralhome.com. Over and out . . . . . .
Published in the Arizona Daily Star on Sept. 1, 2013