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Old 08-18-2009, 11:14 AM
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Post Col Edward G. Kurdziel, USMC, (Ret), 91, Menomonee Falls, WI

Kurdziel, Edward G. Col. USMC (Ret.) Of Menomonee Falls, WI. Entered Eternal Life on August 13, 2009, at age 91. Born on July 29, 1918, in Brooklyn, NY.

Predeceased by his parents Joseph and Mary Kurdziel, and his first wife Arlette Spinney Kurdziel. Survived by his wife Joan David Kurdziel; his sisters, Stella and Frances; his children, Capt. Edward Jr., Dr. Lisa, Bryan, Steve and Denise (Bill) Holder; his grandchildren Alex and Jack Holder; other relatives and many friends.

He graduated from Georgetown University in 1941 where he participated on the football and rifle teams and the yearbook staff. Upon graduation, Edward proudly served his country in the U.S. Marine Corps for 26 years, earning 3 Bronze Stars, 2 Presidential Unit Citations, the United Nations Medal, and the Korean Presidential Unit Citation. He began a distinguished military career with 48 months in the Pacific theater. During WWII, he saw action in the capture and defense of Guadalcanal, the Treasury-Bougainville operations, operations in the Gilberts and the Marshalls, and the assault and occupation of Okinawa. Two weeks after the landing on Okinawa there were 200 men out of 1500 that were not casualties. At the age of 24, he served as the Company Commander, Battalion Operations Officer, Battalion XO, Battalion CO, and Regimental S-4 in the 22nd Marines, 6th Marine Division. When Japan surrendered he was ordered to Tsingtao, China until 1947. He taught at Marine Corps schools until 1950. Ordered back to the Pacific area, he served on Guam as Provost Marshall for Naval Operations as Commanding General, FMF-PAC, Representative and on the staff of Admiral Turner the Far East Command Tokyo, Japan. During his 15 months of service in the Korean War, Edward served as Battalion CO, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division, and Planning Officer in G-3 of X&I Corps, U.S. Army. In 1953 he returned to the Pentagon in the Office of Vice-Chief of Naval Operations. In 1958, he was assigned to the U.S. European Command (Operations) SHAPE Military Headquarters Paris, France. In 1960, he came to Milwaukee and Marquette University to serve as the Commandant of the Marquette Navy ROTC Unit and Professor of Naval Science. Three years later, he returned to Camp Pendleton in California. His last tour was in Washington, DC. as the Administrative Assistant to the Vice-Chief of Naval Operations. He was also attended the Command and General Staff College. Edward retired as a full Colonel in the U.S. Marine Corps.

Edward embarked on his second career at Marquette University. He began as the Dean of Students, the first layman in the school's history to hold that position. After a two year term, he became the Director of Personnel retiring after 27 years of service to the university. Edward was a leader, possessing great courage, ingenuity, honor, intellect, integrity, and compassion. He was someone who loved to learn, and also loved to share with others. He particularly cherished working with young people. His sense of humor and his ability to inspire you to achieve a higher standard were legendary among all those that knew him. He believed absolutely anything was possible and that "luck" was always the result of hard work. He was very involved in the Serra Foundation and the International Crane Foundation. He was a huge Marquette basketball fan and rarely missed a game. Go Warriors! He met life's challenges head on, managing to survive a massive heart attack at the age of 80. With the doctors and nurses of Columbia Hospital fighting alongside him, he recovered and lived 11 more high-quality years which he used well. The family would like to thank all of the staff at Columbia Hospital that worked so hard to keep him with us. Their wonderful care is greatly appreciated. Edward did and will forever exemplify grace, class, strength, and dignity to everyone who knew him. He had an indomitable spirit, a love for people from all walks of life and a passion for leaving the world a better place. A life well-lived!

Visitation will be Thursday, August 20, at the Becker Ritter Funeral Home starting at 4PM until the vigil service at 7PM. Mass of Christian burial will be celebrated at 10AM on Friday, August 21. The mass will take place at St. Agnes Church, Butler, WI, followed by committal services at Resurrection Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, Edward requested that memorials in his name be made to the U.S. Marine Corps, Georgetown University, the Jesuit Partnership or the Milwaukee Serra Club. Sympathy Expressions www.BeckerRitter.com BECKER RITTER Michael Feerick Associate 14075 W. North Ave. Brookfield (262)782-5330
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