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Chaplain (Colonel) William Rodefer, USA, Ret.

Chaplain (Colonel) William O. "Bill" Rodefer, USA, Ret.

Thursday, April 10th, 1930 - Thursday, July 4th, 2019
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Chaplain (Colonel) William O. Rodefer, USA, Ret., 89, of Port Charlotte. Fla. passed away on July 4, 2019. Chaplain Rodefer was a graduate of Milligan College in Tennessee and the Christian Theological Seminary in Indiana. He was ordained a minister with the Disciples of Christ in 1953. In 1961 Reverend Rodefer joined the Indiana National Guard and then transferred to the Army Reserve.
In 1964 he decided that if he was going to be a Chaplain, he needed to find out what it was all about; so he volunteered for active duty and soon found himself on a troop train to San Francisco and then on a ship to Vietnam. He was assigned to the Support Command, 1st Infantry Division (The Big Red One). The second six months of his tour was spent as Chaplain for the 2nd Battalion, 16th Infantry.
After Vietnam, Bill was stationed in Germany where for three years he was Chaplain for the Army Security Agency. He finished his military career in the Army Reserve, retiring in 1988 with the rank of Colonel.
Bill served in several churches in Indiana and Ohio. His last position was at the First Congregational Church of Akron where he was Minister of Pastoral Care for six years. Upon his retirement he was named Associate Pastor Emeritus.
In 2011, Bill met and married Jeanine Sweitzer and between them they had four children, seven grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren.
Besides his wife, Jeanine, he is survived by daughters, Elizabeth (Johnny) Lucas, Debra (John) Markovich; grandchildren, John (Rebecca) Markovich, Jennifer (Ben) Cohen. He was preceded in death by daughter, Jennifer Rodefer.

Graveside services with military honors will take place on Thursday, July 25 at 11:00 a.m. at Ohio Western Reserve National Cemetery in Rittman. A celebration of life will take place at 12:30 that day at the First Congregational Church of Akron (292 E.Market St.). A reception will follow.

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Service Details

  • Service

    Thursday, July 25th, 2019 | 11:00am
    Thursday, July 25th, 2019 11:00am
    Ohio Western Reserve National Cemetery
    10175 Rawiga Rd.
    RITTMAN, OH 44270
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
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  • Reception

    First Congregatonal Church
    292 E. Market St
    AKRON, OH 44308
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
    A Celebration of Bill's LIfe will take place at 12:30 on the same day and will be followed by a reception.


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