Gilbert Scheetz, man of many careers and colleges
When he was 61 in 1975, Gil Scheetz decided he needed a bit more education. Way back in 1932, his formal education had ended with a Bucks County high school graduation.
When he was 61 in 1975, Gil Scheetz decided he needed a bit more education.
Way back in 1932, his formal education had ended with a Bucks County high school graduation.
So he went to four nearby colleges and, by the time he was 69, had earned four degrees.
And then he began yet another career.
On May 12, Gilbert A. Scheetz, 94, a man of several accomplishments, died of colon cancer at his home in Sellersville.
Mr. Scheetz graduated from the Consolidated Sellersville-Perkasie High School the year after it opened, and was a lineman on its 1931 football team.
Maybe that helped with his stamina.
When he worked in the Civilian Conservation Corps in Elk Grove in north-central Pennsylvania in 1933-34, he wrote to a newspaper that "the cave where all the food stuff is kept . . . was cut out of a side of a small mountain."
He returned to Sellersville as an instrument inspector for what is now the U.S. Gauge Division of Ametek Inc.
Before he began his late-in-life college career, Mr. Scheetz shaped two other careers, as a military man and a federal worker.
During World War II, he was an Army rifleman with the 719th Railway Operating Battalion. He served from January 1944 to December 1945, was wounded in Italy, and, his discharge paper stated, earned a Bronze Star and a service medal with three bronze stars.
He returned to Sellersville and continued his federal service in 1946 as a clerk and carrier in the post office.
Mr. Scheetz enlisted in the Air Force Reserve in 1950 and, according to a base publication, was an air transportation superintendent at McGuire Air Force Base in Burlington County before retiring in 1974 as a chief master sergeant.
In civilian life, he wrote in an autobiographical sketch, Mr. Scheetz was a quality assurance specialist with the Defense Supply Center in Philadelphia from 1952 to 1975.
He didn't stay retired for long.
That same year, he began night courses at Bucks County Community College, received an associate degree in nursing, and followed that up with an associate degree in physical rehabilitation at Lehigh Carbon Community College in Schnecksville.
Readied by that rehab training, he wrote in his sketch, Mr. Scheetz worked in the physical-therapy department at Grand View Hospital in West Rockhill, just outside Sellersville. He worked there from 1979 to 1987, a hospital spokeswoman said.
That alone, apparently, could not hold his interest.
Mr. Scheetz earned a bachelor's degree in social sciences at Thomas Edison State College in Trenton in 1980 and a master's in educational administration at Temple University in 1983.
He was a member of Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 245, where he was commander in 1963-64, and American Legion Post 255. The Sellersville Fire Department named him to its 50-year honor roll in 1987.
Mr. Scheetz is survived by nieces Carlotta Stoudt, Sherry Ormeño, and Lisette Lazor.
A memorial service was set for 1 p.m. next Sunday at the Sellersville Fire Department, 2 N. Main St.