Eugene Henry "Gene" Seibert, Barrington, IL (1924 - 2014)
May 7, 1924 - January 6, 2014
Eugene Henry “Gene” Seibert was born in Milwaukee, WI, on May 7, 1924, and lived most of his adult life in Janesville, WI, and Fountain Hills, AZ, before moving to Barrington, IL, in 2003. He died peacefully in Barrington, on Jan. 6, 2014.
“We make a life by what we give”… by all measure, Gene had a full and wonderful life. He gave of himself and his heart to his church, work, community, friends and most importantly to his family including his cherished wife of nearly 65 years, Joanne.
In Gene's youth he played the organ and piano at Simpson Methodist Church often accompanied by his mother. His love of church and music would remain with him throughout his life. His children recall waking Sunday mornings to the music of The Mormon Tabernacle Choir blaring throughout the house and fondly remember Dad “pounding the peddles” on the organ after church. He served on the Janesville First Lutheran Church Council in 1964, during the construction of the education wing. As members of the Shepherd of the Hills Church in Fountain Hills, he and Joanne donated the stained glass window gracing the altar.
Following high school, Gene attended Beloit College in 1942, and joined the Beta Theta Pi fraternity. After one semester, he enlisted in the Army Air Force during World War II. The majority of his three years of service was spent in China, serving with The Flying Tigers. He was shot down twice and was listed as missing in action for three weeks after bailing out behind enemy lines. In 2012, Gene joined fellow WWII vets on an Honor Flight trip to Washington DC, with his son, Kevin. It was one of the highlights of his life and allowed him to see the WWII Memorial, pay tribute to those with whom he served and receive a long overdue proper thank you for his service.
After the War, Gene enrolled at Marquette University and married the love of his life, Joanne Stark on Jan. 25, 1947, at The Wauwatosa Methodist Church. He began his career at Northwestern Mutual Life and shortly thereafter joined Hewitt Associates in Chicago, as one of their first 25 employees. In 1956, Gene joined the Parker Pen Company, Janesville, WI, and served as Corporate Vice President of Human Resources. He introduced innovative benefit solutions for employees and cared deeply about every member of the Parker Pen Community. Following his retirement, he and Joanne founded Seibert Associates. Together they worked with companies to help their employees/spouses plan for retirement. Joanne and Gene were published in several journals and traveled the country consulting and conducting seminars.
Gene's mission to help others was never over at the end of the day. His daughter, Kathy, remembers her Dad coming home for family dinners always filled with “lively” conversations about school or politics. He would often finish dinner and head to Mercy Hospital where he volunteered as a board member for 34 years, including 14 years as Chairman of the Board. He worked closely with the Sisters of Mercy and the Board to build a community hospital system that would remain in Janesville, and meet the health care requirements of area residents without the need to travel long distances for major medical attention. In addition to the Hospital, he also served on the Board at Cedar Crest Retirement Home in Janesville.
He also became very active in politics, holding the position of Vice Chairman of Finance for The Wisconsin Republican Party. His son, Tom, joined him at the 1968 Republican National Convention where Gene served as a State delegate.
His children will always remember Dad as an amazing father and role model. Although he gave of himself in many ways, his devotion and commitment to family always came first. He led us by example and will now continue to be our guiding light for how to live each day to the fullest by focusing attention on the ones we love in the same way he did for us. He shared his positive attitude with all that knew him. His friends and his family will sorely miss his ever-present smile that would light up every room he entered.
Gene is survived by sons: Tom (Kathy Clarkin) of Columbus, OH, and Kevin Seibert (Lucinda Scoville) of Barrington, IL; and daughter, Kathy Tschantz (Ralph) of Omaha, NE. He treasured his eight grandchildren: Matthew (Christine), Bethany (Kevin Reade) and Michael (children of Tom and Kathy), Kristin, John and Carly Tschantz (children of Kathy and Ralph) and Sarah and Megan (children of Kevin and Lucinda). He also celebrated having a great-grandchild, Hudson Reade. Gene was preceded in death by his parents, Henry and Eunice (Liefbrauer) Seibert; his in-laws, LaRue and Irma (Hauver) Stark; and his beloved wife, Joanne.
Gene will be laid to rest in Janesville, during a private ceremony. A memorial service will be held Jan. 25th at 11 a.m. at the Barrington United Methodist Church… Gene and Joanne's Wedding Anniversary. In lieu of other expressions of sympathy, donations may be made to the Mercy Hospital Gene Seibert Memorial Fund.
“Go with God"