LAURITZ ALFRED BERG - INDIANAPOLIS - Lauritz Alfred Berg, 79, passed from this life into Eternal Life on May 30, 2012, at the Hoosier Village Retirement Center in Indianapolis, Ind. He was born Nov. 20, 1932, in Rolette, N.D. Following high school, he studied at the State School of Science, Fort Monmouth Signal School, Utilities Engineering Institute in Chicago, and Caterpillar Intensive Service Training. He served in the United States Army in Korea in the 59th and 71st Signal Corps, 1953 to 1954, and was honorably discharged with the rank of sergeant. He worked on the building of the Ballistic Missile Early Warning System at Thule Air Base, Greenland. He served in the Peace Corps from 1962 to 1964 in Tunisia. During this time, he traveled to Libya, Egypt and throughout Europe. After returning from the Peace Corp, he worked at the Green Lake Conference Center in Wisconsin for 20 years, during which time he worked in the auto mechanics shop as assistant superintendent of buildings and grounds, and as the superintendent of the Lawsonia Links golf course. After leaving full-time employment at Green Lake, he returned many summers to volunteer. He assisted in maintaining the grounds, driving the tour trolley, and working in the lapidary shop at the Troster Arts & Crafts Building. When he moved to Vermont in 1984, he worked for Dare McCuin in anticipation of building a golf course in Essex Junction. Lauritz retired from J.S. Lang & Company in the fall of 1994, at the age of 62. During those times, he started growing Christmas trees on the Chapin family farm. His engineering mind began creating moving things when he was very young, starting first with the motor from the old family washing machine. Though he had many interests, his hobbies included quilting, lapidary (rocks) and woodworking. His last quilt was one made from men's neckties. In 2004, when he moved to the Hoosier Village Retirement Center, he worked on the grounds and repaired chairs used in the dining hall. His latest projects were a belt-driven clock (that was accurate within one minute a day) and a tap dancing, mechanical "Mad Cow" with a moving tail. His next project was to build an oversized bandsaw to be used as a sawmill. Lauritz married Sylvia Chapin on June 10, 1980. He is survived by his loving wife of 32 years; two sons; several brothers and sisters, including Barbara Chapin and R. Daniel Chapin; grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews. A memorial service was held Sunday, June 3, 2012, at the Hoosier Village Retirement Center Chapel. Burial was held on June 15, 2012, at the North Dakota State Veterans Cemetery in Mandan, N.D. Memorial donations may be made to the First Baptist Church, Indianapolis, IN 46240, or the First Baptist Church, Burlington, VT 05401.
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Published in The Burlington Free Press on June 17, 2012