John J. Geffert, 91, of Whiting, passed away peacefully at home Monday,
March 2, 2009.
He was born December 24, 1917 in Whiting, the son of John P. and Veronica (Durick)
Geffert, both of whom preceded him in death.
On March 4, 1943 at Camp Sibert, Alabama, he married Elinor F. Kashak, who
after 59 years of marriage, preceded him in death June 26, 2002.
He is survived by children, John (Patty) Geffert of Chesterton, Ellen
(Steve) Williams of Angola, Ruth Geffert of Munster and Greg Geffert of
Whiting; brothers, Don (Dolores) Geffert of Schererville and Ray Geffert of
Whiting; sisters, Dorothy Geffert and Dolores Decker all of Whiting;
sisters-in-law, Julie Geffert of Whiting and Annette Yuritic of Las Vegas,
Nev. and many nieces and nephews.
He is also preceded in death by brothers, Richard and Joseph Geffert.
John was Scout Master of Boy Scouts of America. He was a graduate of St.
John School and Whiting High School, Class of 1935. He was a devoted member
of St. John the Baptist Catholic Church, Whiting, where he was also active
in the Marian Theatre Guild (St. John Drama Club), as a make-up artist. He
was a WWII Army Veteran attaining the rank of Staff Sergeant. John
participated in the Invasion of Normandy, European Theatre and survived the
Battle of the Bulge. He was a member of the American Legion Whiting Post 80
(life member) and the VFW Walter Kleiber Post 2724.
John and his wife operated the “Corner Grocery Store” in Whiting. He was
owner of Geffert Hardware in Robertsdale for the past 50 years and was also
a retiree of the Amoco Oil (BP) Whiting Refinery with a service of 39 years.
He was a member of the Hammond Park Board and the Hammond Plan Commission
and was very interested in the development of the Lake Michigan shoreline
from Hammond to the Indiana Dunes.
As a conservationist and community activist he was truly dedicated to the
preservation of Wolf Lake and the Hammond Park System. John loved nature and
enjoyed hunting, fishing, camping, family road trips and especially time
spent with family at cookouts and outings in Chesterton at son John’s
country retreat. He was a very patriotic man and a “history buff”. He loved
cowboys, western movies, was a huge John Wayne fan and had visited the
Cowboy Hall of Fame. Holiday time was a time to be surrounded by family and
acknowledge the pride he had in his Slovak ancestry. John could be seen
daily taking long walks with his son Greg’s dog, “Josey”. Devoted to his
family and a friend to all, John will be sadly missed by all who knew and
Funeral services will be at 9:30 a.m. Saturday, March 7, at the Baran
Funeral Home, 1235-119th St., Whiting; a Mass of Christian Burial, Rev. John
E. Kalicky, C.PP.S., officiating, will be offered at 10 a.m. at St. John the
Baptist Catholic Church, Whiting. Interment, will be at St. John Cemetery,
Visitation will be at the funeral home from 2-8 p.m. Friday. Members of the
parish will offer prayers at the funeral home on Friday at 4 p.m. American
Legion Whiting Post 80 and the VFW Walter Kleiber Post 2724 who together
will conduct memorial services at the funeral home on Friday at 7 p.m.
For more information, call 659-4400.