Elwood L. “Woody” Berg, 92, of Kewaskum, passed away October 30.
He was born on February 22, 1921, in Platteville. Mr. Berg, son of Elmer and Edna Berg, grew up on a farm in New Hope Township, Portage County. He loved the country life, and began his lifelong love of hunting and fishing during boyhood. He had a natural proclivity for the mechanics of communications, building his first radio crystal set when he was 13 years old. He attended Nelsonville High School, playing on the basketball team. During the Great Depression, Mr. Berg served in the Civilian Conservations Corps (CCC); he was part of the CCC team that built the ski area of Rib Mountain. During World War II, he served in the European Theater as a Radio Sergeant. Among his medals and awards were a silver battle star for service in five significant battles as well as a croix de guerre and others.
After the War, he attended Wisconsin State University at Stevens Point, then moved to Milwaukee and various jobs. After two brief marriages, he met the love of his life, June Trindl, at a USO dance in Milwaukee. They were married November 25, 1950. The newlyweds purchased a home at 4732 West Montrose Avenue; Mr. Berg began his career as a Central Office Repairman at the Wisconsin Telephone Company at the Broadway exchange. Mr. Berg always preferred the rural life to the urban, however, so he and June purchased a farm and eighty acres in Kewaskum in 1960, transferring his work with the Telephone Company to the West Bend office. A strong, quiet and gentle man, he spent his free moments developing the 80 acres into a working farm. He loved being alone on his tractor, planting, cultivating, and chopping down trees. He enjoyed fixing cars, cooking, reading and writing. He hunted and fished, sharing his passions with his seven children: Odin, Paul, Leif, Matt, Hanna, Eric and Alexandra. Over the years, Mr. Berg served as a Shop Steward in the Washington County Communications Workers of America (CWA) union as well as the St. Lucas Evangelical Lutheran Church Council in Kewaskum. He was a ham radio operator and assisted June in tending her extensive garden. He also did considerable genealogical research into family history.
Mr. Berg also came to enjoy international travel. He and June visited India, China, Korea, Thailand, Vietnam, Indonesia, Egypt, Australia, the United Kingdom, Norway, Germany, France and Italy together. Two particular highlights of his travels were twice visiting his family’s ancestral village of Gaustad, Norway, where he was pleased to note that the Norwegian dialect he learned from his parents is still spoken, and a great love of the ancient country churches of England, which he and June visited on several weeks-long visits. In his final years, Mr. Berg lived at the Cedar Lake Communities near West Bend.
He was predeceased by his twin brother Ellsworth, his younger brother Sidney, his wife June and his daughter Hanna. He is survived by his daughter Alexandra (Berg) Janes, his sons: Odin, Paul, Leif, Matthew and Eric, his daughters-in-law, Patricia (Odin) Berg, Barbara (Leif) Berg, and Ruth (Eric) Berg, his sons- in-law, Barry (Hanna) Roberts and Michael (Alexandra) Janes, and his eight grandchildren.
Funeral services for Elwood will be held at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, November 9, 2013, at St. Lucas Evangelical Lutheran Church, 1417 Parkview Drive in Kewaskum. Rev. Timothy Henning will officiate and cremation will follow the traditional service. Burial, with military honor rites by members of the Robert G. Romaine American Legion Post 384 Kewaskum, of his cremains will be at 1:30 p.m. on Sunday in Lutheran Memorial Park in Kewaskum. The Berg family will greet relatives and friends at the church on Saturday from noon until the time of services. Memorials to St. Lucas Lutheran Church or Cedar Community Partners in Caring are appreciated. The Miller Funeral Home in Kewaskum has been entrusted with Elwood’s arrangements. Additional information and guest book may be found at www.millermartinfh.com.