Bernard “Bernie” Hecker has passed away from a massive stroke on September 2, 2012 at St. Vincent’s Hospital in Erie, Pa.
He was born on August 11, 1926 to Glen and Nina Hecker in Edinboro. He spent his entire 86 years in the Edinboro/ McKean area. He graduated from Edinboro High School and was drafted into the United States Army from 1944-1946 during World War II. He attended engineer school in Rome, Italy for three weeks and was a truck driver for the military- transporting personnel supplies and equipment for the soldiers.
In the early 50s Bernie took to the skies as he got his pilot license and flew small planes as a hobby which he enjoyed, and shared his stories to both his children and grandchildren years later.
Bernie retired from Kaiser Aluminum in Erie, PA as a “chipper”. He enjoyed his work and friendships he had there. When Bernie was not working, he enjoyed traveling around the United States with his family and life on their farm. He loved to be outdoors, walk in the woods, was an avid hunter, cut wood and do farm work with his beloved Ford tractor.
Bernie enjoyed sitting around many bonfires with his grandchildren. In 2006, Bernie and all of his family visited Jackson Hole, Wyoming to celebrate his 80th birthday where he enjoyed riding horses in the mountains. He also had a generous spirit and was always willing to lend a helping hand to those in need. Bernie was a proud donor of 20 gallons of blood for the Erie Blood Bank and took pride in being an organ donor.
Bernie is survived by his wife Arlene whom he married on August 7, 1954, father of Darla (Bob) McDermott, Dawn (Chris) Clark, and son-in-law Tony Molavi ; grandfather of Michael Molavi, Parker McDermott, Zachary Clark, and Hannah McDermott, several sister-in- laws, brother-in-laws, and many nieces and nephews. Bernie is predeceased by his daughter Robin Hecker Molavi, brothers Irvin, and Martin Hecker, and sisters Allene Clark and Millicent Bone.
Friends are invited Bernie’s viewing on Wednesday September 5, 2012 from 3pm to 8pm at Glunt Funeral Home in Edinboro PA. Services will be held on Thursday September 6, 2012 at 11am at Glunt Funeral Home with Reverend Dan Owen from Asbury Methodist Church officiating. Interment will be at the family plot in Edinboro Cemetery. In lieu of flowers-the family is requesting donations be made to: Erie VA Medical Center 135 East 35th St. Erie PA 16504 Attention: Recreation Department.
The family of Bernie would like to thank the staff at Home Instead, the emergency staff at Saint Vincent’s (especially Darcy-caseworker and Colleen R.N) for their guidance and compassion. Special thanks to the entire nursing staff-4th floor (especially Theresa Zbach R.N., Maria R.N. and Liz R.N.) for making Bernie’s last hours comfortable.
We are going to miss you dad and Papa (Pap-Pap) with all our hearts!