Edward John Fillenwarth Jr.
Indianapolis - Edward John Fillenwarth, Jr., 80, died on July 2, 2020, five days after his 56th wedding anniversary. Ed was born on October 10, 1939 to Edward and Helen (Keating) Fillenwarth. He was in the first class at Scecina, where he was co-captain of the football team and All-City Center. He graduated from Notre Dame and ND Law School and served in the Army National Guard, retiring as a Captain in the JAG Corps.
His father, Ed Sr., and he formed their own law firm, which became Fillenwarth, Dennerline, Groth and Towe. For 48 years Ed was dedicated to representing working people and their labor unions. He was listed among the Best Lawyers in America.
Ed and Valerie Miller were married at St. Joan of Arc In 1964. They volunteered at St. Lawrence and Bishop Chatard for the 27 years that their children were there. Ed served on the Boards of East Deanery Education, Catholic Social Services, Archdiocesan Social Ministries, and the Chatard Board of Regents. He was also named a distinguished alumnus of Little Flower School.
Ed truly cared about people. When many jobs had been lost in Indiana, he and Val went to Mexico with Witness for Peace, and learned that NAFTA had been even worse for workers there. They joined WFP delegations to Nicaragua and Colombia to learn why families are forced to leave their homes. Ed served on the National Board of WFP for six years. He and Val visited the Tamarindo Community in El Salvador and the Maryknoll Sisters in Bolivia. They helped start Indy's Pax Christi, the international peace movement that began after WW II.
Ed was devoted to the CYO, which was started here by Bishop Ritter, Ed's father and many others. He was President of the CYO Board for two terms and, like his father and son Jack, was given the St. John Bosco Medal. His son Bill is named for CYO greats Bill Kuntz, Bill Sahm and Bill Sylvester. At age 59 at the urging of his kids, Ed ran the first of his 15 full and 27 half marathons! Running led to so much fun for the "Big Filly Fam".
Ed's greatest love was for his close, supportive family who all live nearby: Dan and Amy (Eck), Jack and Beth (Johnson), Sheila Mays, Diane (Bob) Schultz, Brian and Christy (Leighton), Drew, and Bill. His 17 grandchildren are: Kyle and Gracemarie (Mike), Christy (Andrew) Desmarais, Emma, Max, Lily and Zach, Erin, Annie, Brynn and Shain Mays, Nick, Valerie and Owen Schultz, Joe, Sarah and Andrew, and little great-grandchildren Evelyn, Ben, Jack, and Jacob.
He is survived by Val, his sisters Marianne (Sam) Rhinesmith and Jeanmarie (Hugh) McGowan, the Miller family, and many nieces, nephews and cousins. Ed was preceded in death by his parents and his grandson, Ben Fillenwarth.
A Mass will be held on the west lawn of Bishop Chatard High School on Thursday, July 9 at 9:30 am. Please bring a chair, wear masks and respect social distancing. You may park at Christ the King Church or Bishop Chatard. Burial will be at Our Lady of Peace Cemetery. A livestream of the Mass can be viewed on the Feeney-Hornak Keystone Facebook page.
Donations in Ed's memory may be made to the Catholic Youth Organization, 580 E. Stevens St., 46203.