The Obit For Hal Arbeiter

Harold Arbeiter

Published in The Southern Illinoisan on April 18, 2010


JACOB - Harold "Hal" Arbeiter, 93, died Friday, April 16, 2010, in Missouri Delta Medical Center in Sikeston, Mo.

He was born in the Gorham area, the son of Fred W. Arbeiter and Sophia Schomber Arbeiter.

He and Corinne Heins were married Dec. 6, 1941, in St. Louis; she passed away Oct. 26, 2009.

Harold attended Christ Evangelical School in Jacob, Gorham Public 8th Grade, Gorham High School and Southern Illinois University for two years to earn a teacher's certificate; he then taught school for five years. During the summers of the first two years, he had tryouts as a pitcher for the Cardinals and Yankees on their minor league teams. At the end of his fifth year of teaching, our nation was preparing for the coming of World War II at a time when it was emerging from a long time depression. Demands for defense workers were high in the early 1940s, so when the school year ended in May, he joined McDonnell Aircraft in St. Louis and helped the war effort for several years. While with them, he played baseball for the last time as a pitcher. McDonnell won the St. Louis Industrial Championship that year. They were fortunate to have a professional league manger to guide the team.

Hal was drafted for military service shortly thereafter, serving for two and a half years. He spent 22 months in the European theatre of operation - starting near Naples, Italy, then to France through the Mediterranean Sea, landing near Nice. After that, he moved north through France to near Paris when the war ended. His next assignment would have required him, and other soldiers without enough "service points" to go home, to be shipped to Japan to defeat them. Luckily, President Truman came to the rescue and ended that war by dropping the "Big Bomb," so Harold returned to St. Louis, was discharged at Jefferson Barracks, and returned to his life with Corinne

His first job was with National Service Life, then Mutual Savings Life, both in St. Louis. He then moved to Jefferson City to help start the Farm Bureau Life Insurance in 1950. During his stay in St. Louis and Jefferson City, he completed his studies for a bachelor's degree at Washington University and also finished 14 three-hour insurance industry ex-aminations. In May 1955, he received an offer from Aid Association for Lutherans in Appleton, Wis. to become their Chief Underwriter. Twenty-seven years' later he retired as V.P. of Life and Health Claims. After retirement, he became a real estate broker salesman for approximately 10 years. He had a difficult time trying to retire. In every area where Harold and Corinne lived they were active members in the Lutheran Church. He served on various committees, taught Sunday school, participated in Bible study and served as chairman of two congregations which had major building projects.

In March of 1999, Harold and Corinne moved to Jackson, Mo., to really retire and where they met more of the finest people in America. He was a member of St. Andrew Lutheran Church in Cape Girardeau and former member of Christ Lutheran Church in Jacob.

God has been with us and graciously guided us safely through the circuitous path of our life. Thanks be to God for all His gifts.

Hal is survived by one brother, Earl Arbeiter of St. Louis; and two sisters, Pearl Foy of Granite City and and Ruth Ann Sextro of Nevada, Mo.; and several nephews and nieces and grandnephews and grandnieces.

Funeral services will be at 10 a.m. Monday, April 19, 2010, in Christ Lutheran Church in Jacob, with the Rev. Paul Short officiating. Burial will be in Christ Lutheran Church Cemetery, with full military honors by American Legion Post 127, VFW Post 7190 and DAV Chapter 69. Visitation will be from 9 to 10 a.m. Monday at the church.

Memorials to St. Andrew Lutheran Church in Cape Girardeau or Christ Lutheran Church in Jacob.

Ford and Sons Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.