Thomas Dale Feltenz

Thomas Dale Feltenz

Thomas Dale Feltenz, age 85, of Sun City, Arizona, passed away on July 12, 2014 at the Banner Boswell Medical Center in Sun City.

Funeral Services will be held at the Picha Funeral Home in Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin on Monday, July 21, 2014 at 11:00 am. Visitation will be held from 10:00 until the time of the service at 11:00 a.m. Burial will be held at the Lake View Cemetery in Oxford, Wisconsin. A luncheon will be served at the Oxford Bible Church, 547 West Ormsby Street in Oxford. Thomas was born February 23, 1929 in Mazon, Illinois. He was the last student that attended the Torino Grade School. The next year, Tom and Mrs. Jensen, his teacher, moved to Godley Grade School. Tom attended Gardner South Wilmington Township High School for one year. He was bored with book learning so decided to quit school. His father, John Feltenz married to Inez Gould, told him “If you don’t go to school, then you get a job.” He gained knowledge by watching and asking others to teach him their trades. A short time after he was married to Beverly Pantaleone, he purchased, moved and renovated a house, thus learning carpentry construction and plumbing. He had some knowledge of this from working on farms. Along the way, he worked at the Joliet Army Ammunition Plant often driving and relocating trucks filled with live explosives. A few welding lessons from his brother-in-law helped him obtain a welding job working for A. O. Smith welding hot water tanks. His father was an underground miner and used dynamite to remove stumps and split big rocks on the farm. During the time that he was married to Josie Small, Tom became an explosive expert and was hired by the Gary Slag Plant, Gary, Indiana.

A friend of the family suggested that he join the Construction Operating Engineer Union Local 150 and allow them to find him good paying jobs. He said that was one of the best things that he had ever done.

Tom worked for twelve years as a Construction Operating Equipment Engineer helping build Bethlehem Steel Corp in Gary, IN. He was a “Master Mechanic” in charge of making sure that at least 20 cranes were in top shape and out performing where they were supposed to be every day. After Bethlehem Steel, he was the Operating Engineer that supervised the use of various cranes to insulate the NIPSCO, “Northern Indiana Public Service Company” electric towers being built near where he lived in San Pierre, IN with his then wife Delores Ledvina. He told me that he directed work, using radios and communication devices, being done by a number of cranes from the ground. He wore head phones giving directions to workers that he could not even see.

Around 1970, Tom worked as a Construction Operating Engineer for Local 150 Engineers Union in helping build the towers for the cooling lake for Commonwealth Edson nuclear plant. This area is now named Masonia and one of the areas that flooded is the farm once own by Tom’s grandparents, Peter and Agnes Feltenz.

Since Tom retired, he has been flipping houses in the Sun City area plus traveling a great deal. He was a long standing member of the Masonic Lodge.

Tom is survived by his daughters, Diana (Sam) Chidiac and Marilyn Feltenz; sons, Roger Feltenz and James Feltenz; step-daughter, Joan Danford, step-sons, Kevin (Dawn) Danford, Kent (Jan) Danford, Keith (Lonnie) Danford; sisters, Barbara Ager, Virjean (Randy) Kingsley and Lola (Jo) VanMeter; step-brother, Andy McClyman; grandchildren and great grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents; wife, Delores; son, Thomas Feltenz, Jr; granddaughter, Heather McQuisten; sister, Mary Ann and step-sister, Thelma McClyman.