Humanity has lost one of its finest members with the passing of Alvin A. Saeger of Merrill. Dad was pushing 97 years when he passed away very peacefully at the Merrill hospital on Wednesday, November 16, 2016. Born on the Ides of March, 1920, Dad lived his strong faith. He was the oldest son of Nina and Leslie Saeger and was proud to be in the first graduating class of the “new” Trinity Lutheran School. He has one brother Maynard who lives in Ontario, CA, one sister, Carolyn, who lives in Portland, OR and one brother, Lyle who is deceased.
On Christmas Day, 1941, Dad landed in Casablanca to engage in World War II. He served as a Chaplain’s Assistant and was involved in the Normandy Invasion and the Battle of the Bulge. Like many veterans from the Greatest Generation, Dad didn’t talk much about the war other than describing how terrible the war was.
When he returned home from the war, he married Elayne Kellner on November 25, 1945 in Merrill and together they had just celebrated 50 years of marriage when Mom unexpectedly passed away in January, 1996. Mom and Dad were the proud (we hope!) parents of Jan (and Clark) Nienow from Appleton, Ricci (and Jane) Saeger from Crossville, TN and Larry (and Sue) Saeger from St. Germain. He also had grandchildren Tiffany, Tia, Amber, Amy and Dan and great grandchildren Isaac and Cooper and many nieces and nephews.
Prior to his retirement, Dad enjoyed long term employment with Standard Oil distributing heating oil throughout the Merrill area. In 1964, he successfully ran to become the City Treasurer in Merrill and was re-elected every two years until his retirement in 1988. Dad really enjoyed his work and seemed to have met most of the people in Merrill through his working life. He often spoke of his “days on the truck”.
Dad was very active in both his church and the community. He was a life-long member of the Trinity Men’s Club and always enjoyed their meetings, especially at “the shack”. Throughout the years, he served in many leadership positions with the church as it was a big part of his life. Dad was also a founding member of the Merrill Optimist Club and a member of the VFW.
Dad loved both playing and watching sports. He was a long time pitcher for Trinity in the Merrill fast pitch church league and often talked about hitting a home run ball at Streeter Square that went all the way down to the Cosmo! In middle age, he started playing golf and he and Mom would play until he was in his 80’s. Like most Wisconsinites, he enjoyed watching the Packers, Badgers and Brewers. Sports on TV gave him plenty of time to take many “knaps”. He also loved to take walks through the Council Grounds. Although there are many benches in the park “Dad’s Bench” was the first one! And until he became physically unable, he was a regular Sunday noon diner at Schult’s in Merrill where he had many friends and acquaintances.
In his final years, Dad was a resident of Bell Tower where he enjoyed the company of residents Berm, Janet, Norm, Elroy and others. He appreciated the staff at Bell Tower especially Nicole and “Jack Rabbit” and often said “this is a nice place”. Never a complainer about anything, Dad appreciated and lived life to its fullest. He lived his faith everyday and would frequently say “God will provide”. For Dad, his glass was not just “half full”, it was overflowing. He lived by the Golden Rule and was the kindest, most thoughtful person on earth. But he was looking forward to joining Mom in Heaven where he has a tee time all lined up. We hope you hit ‘em long and straight!
A Memorial Service for Alvin will be held on Monday, November 21, 2016 at 11:30 AM at Trinity Lutheran Church in Merrill. The Rev. Scott Gustafson will officiate. Visitation will be held from 10 AM until the time of service also at the church. Dad’s cremains will be placed next to Mom’s in Merrill Memorial Park. Military honors will be performed by Merrill VFW Post #1638. In lieu of flowers, donations in Al’s name may be made to the charity of choice. Waid Funeral Home of Merrill is assisting the family with arrangements. Online condolences may be made at www.waidfuneral.com.