Family members and friends will gather for a memorial service in Holland, Michigan on Monday, July 3 to remember Lisburn-born US Army veteran Albert ‘Bert’ Bleakley.
Bert, who spent his early years in Lisburn before his family emigrated to the United States when he was six years old, passed away peacefully last month at his home in Michigan, surrounded by his loved ones. He was 97 years old.
After attending Officer Candidate School Bert proudly served in the Philippines with the US Army during the Second World War.
Returning home after the war, he settled back into civilian life and went on to enjoy a 54 year career as a refinery superintendent for Cargill before becoming a consultant with Oil Dri.
After living in Pennsylvania, Illinois and North Carolina, Bert retired to Holland, Michigan.
In North Carolina he was an active volunteer with the National Alliance on Mental Illness, and he also worked at the food pantry at Highland Presbyterian Church in Fayetteville.
He continued volunteering following his move to Holland, delivering meals to senior citizens and working with a charitable organisation to produce colourfully painted hand powered carts for disabled children around the world.
Bert is survived by his seven children, 11 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
His ashes will be buried at Oak Hill Cemetery in Hammond, Indiana.