WARREN W. TEETS, 88
Command Sergeant Major Retired
LAKELAND - Warren W. Teets (Command Sergeant Major, Retired), 88, beloved husband, father, grandfather and friend, passed away the evening of November 22, 2012 at Lakeland Regional Hospital, due to heart failure.
Born April 26, 1924, and raised in Friendsville, Maryland, he was the son of George Harvey Teets and Arvetta Pearl Fearer Teets.
Mr. Teets is preceded in death by his parents, seven brothers Arthur, Stanley, Ivan, Glen, Orval, Harvey Junior and Kenneth, and two sisters Rose Laub and Mildred Umbel. He leaves behind to cherish his memory his wife Roseanne, daughters Barbara Scarpa and Susan Turner (John Belohlavek), sons William Christian Teets (Karen) and Michael Teets (Ruth), stepdaughters Stephanie Edwards and Kristine Edwards (John Buckley), eight grandchildren, eleven great grandchildren, his first wife Nancy Douglas Teets, and many nieces and nephews.
As a young man, Mr. Teets left Maryland to serve as a member of the Civilian Conservation Corps in Yellowstone National Park. At the onset of World War II
, he enlisted in the United States Army
, Corps of Engineers, and served with the 904th Engineers A. F. Headquarters Company. Landing in Casablanca in February 1943, his unit proceeded up the coast of North Africa to Bizerte and participated in the invasions of Sicily at Gala, and Italy at Salerno. His unit moved through the Naples, Italy area and, amidst heavy fighting at Monte Cassino, into the Rome-Arno region. After thirty-three months of continuous overseas duty, he returned home in October 1945. His many decorations included the European-African Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with four battle stars, the Good Conduct Medal, and the World War II Victory Medal.
He later joined the Florida National Guard in which he served for almost thirty years. He retired as a Command Sergeant Major, the senior enlisted man in the Florida Guard. For his distinguished service, he was awarded the Florida Cross.
In 2002, Mr. Teets wrote an account of his war-time experiences entitled That Our Children May Live Free: Memories of 1942 through 1945, The War Years. Its content spoke to how he felt about his and his fellow soldiers' contributions to their country. More recently, he co-authored Rufus Steele 1943, a book of historical fiction based on these experiences, published in 2011.
After retirement from the United States Postal Service, he moved to Lakeland, Florida.
Throughout his life, he volunteered his time and service to many organizations including youth baseball leagues, the Lions Club, Salvation Army, Veterans of Foreign Wars
, and area veterans' hospitals. Every week, he served as a volunteer on Lakeland's Fort Fraser Trail.
His hobbies included golf, stamp and coin collecting. As a skilled golfer, he and his teammates were frequently among the top finishers in local tournaments. His interests included football, baseball, attending family outings and sporting events in which his grand children participated, square dancing, and the occasional lively hand of poker.
The family wishes to thank Dr. Fred Schreiber for his medical guidance and care during the last four years, and the staff of the Critical Care unit at Lakeland Regional Hospital.
Mr. Teets attended the First Presbyterian Church of Lakeland. In celebration of his life, a memorial service will be held at ten o'clock on Saturday, December 8, 2012 in the Chapel at the First Presbyterian Church of Lakeland. At a later date, a military service will take place at the Bushnell National Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, Mr. Teets requested donations be made to American Legion VFW Post 8 in Winter Haven, the Salvation Army, or the Disabled American Veterans. Condolences to the family can be made to: www.oakridgefuneralcare.com
Oak Ridge Funeral Care, Winter Haven, Florida