The world lost one of its greatest men Aug. 4, 2019.
Arthur Breidenbach, 100, of Tiffin, passed away peacefully surrounded by his loving family at St. Francis Nursing Home.
He was born April 14, 1919, to Elmer and Lorene (Weinandy) Breidenbach. He married Marie Zoeller June 6, 1946.
He is survived by wife, Marie; son, Larry Breidenbach of Tiffin; daughters, Shirley (Jerry) Vilinsky of Sun City Center, Florida, and North Royalton and Denise (Scott) Walsh of Holland; brother, Thomas (Joyce); sister, Susie (Phil) Hohman; sisters-in-law, Christine Breidenbach and Emma Hoover; brothers-in-law, Brother Maurus Zoeller, O.S.B., and Bernard (Jean) Zoeller; grandchildren, Leah (Ryan) Oldendick, Drew (Kirsten) Vilinsky, Jonathon Walsh and Madison Walsh; great-grandchildren, Ty Oldendick and Therese Vilinsky; and dozens of nieces and nephews, whom he adored dearly.
He was preceded in death by his sisters, baby Anna, Rita (Clete) Brickner and Alma “Dolly” Moffet; and brother, Paul Breidenbach.
Art was born and raised in Tiffin. He grew up on a farm working with his brothers and sisters. Marie’s family farm was across the road. Art met the love of his life at a one-room school house that he and Marie both attended. Art and Marie traded pencils and the rest is history.
Art celebrated his 100th birthday in April with approximately 80 of his friends and family. This accomplishment was recognized on the front page of the Tiffin Advertiser-Tribune as well as WTOL evening news in Toledo. He also was paid tribute that day by active Staff Sgt. Sadler from Monclova U.S. Army base, who personally thanked him for his service and for paving the way for our freedom.
Art was a veteran of World War II, as a switchboard operator in Germany for the 63rd Infantry Division and was awarded the Bronze Star for “his unflagging devotion to duty.” He was very proud of his service to his country. He also was very proud to visit Washington, D.C., in 2012 as part of Honor Flight with his daughter, Denise. Although he was 93 at the time, he refused to use a wheelchair during his journey that day. He said the wheelchairs were for “the old people.”
Art was employed at the National Machinery Co. for 34 years, retiring in 1979. Prior to working at National Machinery, he worked at Seneca Wire Mill and Huth Construction Co. After retirement, he and Marie enjoyed their winters in Palmetto, Florida, where they developed life-long friends with dozens of couples at Tree Lakes Resort. They were the activity chairmen for many years, coordinating countless activities, including Marie’s tea parties where somehow Art always ended up having to wear his tuxedo and serve as the maitre d’.
Art was an extremely faithful Catholic and a member of St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Tiffin. He made a commitment to God upon retirement that he would go to Mass every day. His attendance has been almost perfect the past 40 years. He was also a member of the Tiffin Chapter of Knights of Columbus, where he was a member of the Fourth Degree, American Legion Post 169, Tiffin Elks Lodge No. 94 and Tiffin Eagles No. 402.
Art will be greatly missed by his family and friends. While a quiet and simple man, he had the gift of earning the love and admiration of everyone he met. He has been a tremendous role model for his children and grandchildren. His love of Marie has always been evident as he always held her hand as they walked together.
The family would like to thank the nursing staff of St. Francis for their loving care. In particular, the Fabrizio family of physical therapists, who helped Art stay active and certainly extended his life. They also are very appreciative of the care Art received from Dr. Vela and his staff, Dr. Bruhl, Dr. Copeland and Dr. Zaciewski as well as Heartland Hospice and his special caregiver, Diane Weisenhauer. And a very special thank you to Father Joe Szybka, who always held a special place in Art’s heart as he helped guide Art’s faith with his love and support.
Friends may visit with the family 4-8 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 8, 2019, at Hoffmann-Gottfried-Mack Funeral Home & Crematory, 236 S. Washington St., Tiffin, OH 44883, (419) 447-2424. The Knights of Columbus Fourth Degree will be doing an honor guard 6-8 p.m. and the National Machinery Quarter Century Club will meet in body at 7 p.m. A wake service will begin at 8 p.m.
His funeral Mass will begin at 10 a.m. Friday, Aug. 9, 2019, at St. Joseph Church with the Rev. Joseph Szybka officiating. A rosary will be prayed 20 minutes prior to Mass. Burial will follow in St. Joseph Catholic Cemetery with military honors being conducted by United Veterans Council.
Memorial contributions may be made to St. Joseph’s Catholic Church Organ Fund, 36 Melmore St., Tiffin, OH 44883 or ALS Association, Northern Ohio Chapter, 6155 Rockside Road, No. 403, Independence, OH 44131 (Art’s favorite charity in memory of his brother, Paul).
Condolences may be sent and the guestbook signed at www.hgmackfuneralhome.com.