Bert T. Olson
Empire, Michigan—Bert T. Olson, 92, beloved husband and father, died Thursday afternoon at his home on Glen Lake.
Born October 26, 1916, in Sykeston, North Dakota, he was the son of immigrant Swedish parents, Hans and Tekla (Petterson) Olson. He attended the General Motors Institute (now Kettering University) as a work study student from 1934-1938, graduating with the class of 1938. On August 24, 1938, in Pontiac, Michigan, he married Helen Elizabeth McCreedy, his sweetheart since junior high school.
He enjoyed a long and prosperous career with General Motors, contributing much at Truck and Coach through the war years. He was promoted to Plant Manager at Delco Products Division of GM in Dayton, Ohio, in 1955, returning to become Manufacturing Manager at Truck and Coach in Pontiac in 1967. He was made General Manager of Packard Electric Division of General Motors in Warren, Ohio, where he remained until he retired in 1975.
Always active in Scouting, he entered the Boy Scouts in 1928 and attributed much of his later success to what the Boy Scouts taught him. He was a great believer in passing on what he had been given, and served on the Executive Board of the Miami Valley Council in Dayton, Ohio, and was honored with the Silver Beaver Award, the highest recognition a council can bestow. He also served on the Western Reserve Council in Warren, Ohio. He served as President of the Scenic Trials Council in Traverse City, Michigan, from 1982-1984 when he spearheaded an effort to grow the endowment to over $750,000. In the fall of 2008, he was honored with 80-year veteran status as the longest registered Scout in the Scenic Trails Council. He was an active member of Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Glen Arbor and supported many other service organizations, including the Kiwanis Club of Dayton, Ohio, and the Lions’ Club of Empire. He was designated a Significant Sig by his fraternity, Sigma Chi, in 1971.
He was preceded in death by his wife of 60 years, Helen Olson, his brother George Olson and his sister Hazel Chellberg.
Survivors include his second wife Virginia Weckwert Olson; three daughters, Dr. Karin Olson of Traverse City; Kristin (Darrell) Lauer of New York, New York, and Katie (Robert) Cook of Estero, Florida. Grandsons include Robert and Jeffrey Cook and Nicholas Lauer. Survivors also include Virginia Olson’s children: Andre Weckwert, Karla Koonce, Judy Bachmeyer and Heidi Weckwert.
Visitation will be from 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm and 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm Friday, May 29, at the Traverse City Chapel of Covell Funeral Homes. Funeral services will be held at Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Glen Arbor, Michigan, on Saturday, May 30, at 3:00 pm. The Reverend Bernard Filbert will officiate. Burial will immediately follow the services at Maple Grove Cemetery in Empire, Michigan.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Scenic Trails Council, Boy Scouts of America, 1499 Business Park Drive, Traverse City, Michigan 49686.
Please share a fond memory of Bert at www.MeM.com.
Arrangements have been entrusted to Covell Funeral Home in Traverse City, Michigan.