93, resident of La Verne, passed away 27 November 2010. He was born 20 August 1917 to Arthur & Euphemia Wigell in Chicago, Illinois. Howard worked in education for 40 years, as a music teacher & counselor at John Swett High School in Crockett, CA, as Vice-Principal and Principal at Bonita High School District of La Verne and San Dimas, CA, retiring in 1984. He was active in local civic organizations and was past president of the La Verne Rotary Club. He was a veteran of World War II, working as a cryptographer in the European Theater and organizing a dance band the "Fighter Comets," that performed at military bases & appeared at the Stage Door Canteen in London & the Royal Opera House at Covent Garden. Howard loved golfing, fishing in northern Lakes, international travel, & regaling beloved friends and family with tales of his adventures. Preceded in death by wife Blanche Knox Wigell, brothers LeRoy and C. Arthur, & daughter Holly. Survived by daughter Kristina Van Blaricom of Seattle, WA, son Dr. Arthur Wigell of Camperdown, Victoria, Australia, 3 grandchildren, niece Jill Wigell of Haleiwa, HI & 4 nephews & a niece on the East Coast. Plans for memorial services are pending. In lieu of flowers please make donations to the Robert and Beverly Lewis Family Cancer Center at Pomona Valley Hospital, Pomona, CA to the VITAS Hospice Charitable Fund.
To plant trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published by Daily Bulletin on Dec. 12, 2010.
No memorial events are currently scheduled.
To offer your sympathy during this difficult time, you can now have memorial trees planted in a National Forest in memory of your loved one.
Add a Message

Not sure what to say?

9 Entries
Mr. Wigel. You will be missed. You were such a positive role model for me in my youth and kept me on the path of "doing the right things". Not only the students that were in the band but the whole student body at John Swett Union High School benefited from your years of service to JSUHS and the community.

Ken Valine - Class of '60
January 27, 2011
My thoughts and prayers are with Howard's family. I am deeply sorry to read of Howard's passing. I had contact with Howard, numerous times, regarding his ancestral lineage. I have tried to contact him recently, without success, regarding a Finnish family connection (I believe Oravainen) that wanted to provide him with pictures of the Wigells. Howard was a delightful person, and he seemed (as a talented musician) to be impressed that members of his Finnish Family Wegelius - Wigell the more earthly form, were also talented in that regard. Among those family members are Martin Wegelius (founder of the Helsinki Conservatory - now known as Sibelius Academy) and Aleksander Hermansson Wigell, my gr gr grandfather - noted folk musician of the Seinäjoki area of Finland. Again, I am in sorrow in reading of his passing.
January 11, 2011
Mr. Wigell inspired me privately and in the classroom. All of his students were expected to excell, and even though performing the 'White Book' was frightening, we all rose to the occasion and did our best, for him & ourselves.
The family should be very proud of a man who impacted so many lives.
Sincerely, Cherie Bellecci
Cherie Bellecci
January 6, 2011
Howard Wigell,
A friend, mentor, a person of high moral character and the man resposible for all the things I accomplished in my adult life. He will be missed but remembered by the many lives he touched. Roland Braga Class of 53
January 6, 2011
Mr Wigel inspired me throughout my life to pursue my music. He supported my ambitions throughout my years at John Swett. There is only one other person who was as important in my life as he. That man was my father. He touched so many lives with his talent and kindness. I feel fortunate to have known such a wonderful man.
Ardith Rodriguez Bertorello
January 5, 2011
Even though my father played trumpet, it was Mr. Wigell's Carquinez School program that got me into music. My father picked up from my desire to play and gave me lessons. I am more active in playing now than ever before in my life and owe it to the great program at John Swett that Mr. Wigell ran so well introducing us to serious music. Rare is it that your favorite teacher is the head of the music program but he was mine. I also learned a lot of hard lesson of life from him. Michael Bottini (class of '61)
January 5, 2011
And he also ran the band program at Carquinez Grammar School, across the street from John Swett High. Sort of a farm program for the big leagues of the high school marching band. A fine man and great teacher.
George Martin
January 5, 2011
Howard Wigell was my mentor at John Swett High School. He was a great band director and counselor who was highly respected and developed an incredible program for the town of Crockett. We exchanged Christmas cards every year, but missed his this year. Our sincerest sympathy to Kristina and Arthur. Sincerely, Elise and Dennis Haugh
Elise Haugh
January 4, 2011
My deepest condolences to the friends and family of Mr. Wigell. I remember him as the Principal at Bonita High School and later a District Administrator. I also recall him as a good, well respected, and fair man.
Jim Zimmer,
Bonita Class of 1971
Jim Zimmer
January 4, 2011
Showing 1 - 9 of 9 results