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Merrill R. Huntzinger

Merrill R. "Lefty" Huntzinger

of Noblesville, died August 27, 2014 at the age of 90. He was the son of the late Oscar and Hila Marie Glancy Huntzinger and was born in Blackford County near Hartford City on June 17, 1924.

Merrill was a graduate of Jefferson Township High School (Upland-Matthews). There were 14 in his graduation class at Matthews, which was followed by thirty months of WW II military service.

He was drafted into the United States Army at age 18 and during his six-and-one half months of infantry combat in France, Germany and Belgium he advanced in rank from private to staff sergeant and was awarded the Bronze Star Medal three times, twice for valor and a third time for meritorious service. He was also awarded the Purple Heart Medal twice for combat wounds.

His 38th Infantry Regiment of the Second Infantry Division was awarded the Presidential unit citation for destroying 78 German armored vehicles during the Battle of the Bulge. For that fete the Belgian government awarded his Regiment their prestigious Fourragere shoulder rope. In the past few years the French government personally honored Huntzinger with their Liberte-Normandy Medal and their Knight of the Legion of Honor Medal, their highest award which dates back to Napoleon's reign. He later served as a volunteer in the Indiana Guard Reserve and retired from that State authorized organization as a Lieutenant Colonel.

Merrill was a graduate of Butler University's class of 1949 and was a member of Sigma Nu Fraternity. He worked as a salesman for Channel 4 and Channel 13 and for radio stations WIFE, WNDE/WFBQ, WXLW and was retired from WIBC and Emmis Publishing.

Huntzinger is survived by his son, Richard (Cheryl) Huntzinger of Greenfield; grandsons, Jesse (Lori), Dylan (Brittany) and Andrew Huntzinger, all of Indianapolis; and Nathan Huntzinger of Noblesville. Other survivors are granddaughter Megan (Tony) Huntzinger Prince of Bloomington, great-grandson Cameron and Brady Huntzinger and great-granddaughter Aubrey Huntzinger , all of Indianapolis. Other survivors are step-granddaughter Christi (Eric) Lowe and great step-granddaughter Adalyn Lowe of Noblesville. A niece, Tonya Smith (Jasbir) Kalouria lives in Ohio and her sons, Kim and Sheraton Kalouria reside in Ohio and California, respectively. Merrill was preceded in death by a sister, Charline Huntzinger Smith of Hartford City, his wife of 64 years, Sarah Imogene "Jean" Wetherald Huntzinger, and a son, Mark Huntzinger of Bloomington.

Merrill was a member of the 2nd Infantry Division association, Military Order of the Purple Heart, Disabled American Veterans, Battle of the Bulge Association, Combat Infantrymen's Association and the Frank Huntzinger American Legion Post 45 of Noblesville. He was also a member of Broadcast Pioneers and was past president of The Service Club of Indianapolis, The World War II Roundtable, The Indiana Guard Reserve Retired Association and was a former member of the Advertising Club of Indianapolis. He attended St. Luke's United Methodist Church in Indianapolis.

There will be no funeral services because Merrill bequeathed his remains to the Indiana University School of Medicine. A private celebration of his life will be arranged by his family at a later date.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Service Club of Indianapolis, Sigma Nu Fraternity of Butler University, or the Hamilton County Humane Society of Noblesville.

Arrangements entrusted to Shirley Brothers Mortuaries and Crematory .


Published in the The Indianapolis Star on Aug. 29, 2014
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