Bernard J. Erenberger Sr., 88, of Solon, Iowa, passed away peacefully at his home May 9, 2020, surrounded by his loving family.
Bernie was born in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, on Jan. 30, l932, to George and Georgia (Rushek) Erenberger. He graduated from Wilson High School in l950, and was a member of the l950 Wilson State Baseball Championship team.
He served in the Air Force, unit 133 AC&W Squadron during the Korean War. He was employed as a painter, estimator and then eventual owner of Broulik Painting, Inc. in Cedar Rapids, for over 70 years.
He married Sally Fellwock on Nov. 5, l953, in Cedar Rapids, and they had four sons, Bernard Jr, of Milwaukee, Wis., Gary G. of Cedar Rapids, Joel D. of Iowa City, Iowa, and Larry D. of Marana, Ariz. The couple later divorced.
He married the former Jo (DeSutter) Broulik on Jan. 22, l985, in Austin, Texas, and they had one son, Tim J. of Des Moines, Iowa.
Bernie was a member of the Solon American Legion and served in the Color Guard, PDCA, Scottish Rite Temple, The Masons, Odd Fellows of Ely, Iowa, El Kahir Shrine, 70 year member of the Painters Local 447 and served on the Solon School Board and various organizations throughout his lifetime.
Bernie is survived by his wife Jo; his five sons, Bernard Jr. and wife Elizabeth, Gary and wife Linda, Joel and wife Suzanne, Larry and wife Carol, and Tim; grandchildren Chiara Erenberger, Trey Erenberger, Paul Erenberger; four step-grandchildren William Thompson, Michael Thompson, Matt Ritchard, Nicole Ritchard; 10 great-grandchildren; his sister Carol Stodola and husband Kenneth, and their sons Doug and Steve; sister-in law Jean DeSutter and daughter Erin Rangel and husband Mike; brother-in-law John DeSutter and son Zach; and numerous relatives and friends, by whom he will be deeply missed.
He was preceded in death by his parents and his Baba Fannie.
Bernie was involved with basketball, football and baseball throughout his young life, and was the pitcher for the Wilson Ramblers baseball team of Cedar Rapids. Later he enjoyed fishing, especially at his home in Minnesota, hunting and golfing. He enjoyed playing sports and many teammates were lifelong friends. He loved listening to good polka music, but hated to dance.
Bernie had a vast knowledge of local history and heritage and would love to visit with friends, family and also met so many people with his interest in their history and families.
He lived by the rule that your word and a handshake was a commitment to be honored.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be given to the Solon American Legion Color Guard, El Kahir Transportation Fund in Cedar Rapids, or The Solon Fire Station Building Fund.
A private family service will be held at this time with Military rites at Oakland Cemetery in Solon. A celebration of life will be held at a later date when such events are again allowed.
“Sometimes you want to go where everybody knows your name, and they’re always glad you came.”
Online condolences may be expressed to the family at www.broshchapel.com