Donald L. Wheeler, age 76, of Erie, died unexpectedly of natural causes on Monday, April 5, 2010 at his home. Born in Erie on August 19, 1933, he was one of three sons of the late Sidney and Marie Behringer Wheeler.
Wheeler, Donald L.Don was a beloved father, grandfather and husband, friend and neighbor who held a strong belief in God and in the importance of family. He enjoyed family gatherings and spending time with his friends, and will always be remembered for his kindness, his generosity, and for never speaking an unkind word of anyone.
After serving in the United States Army during the Korean Conflict, Don returned home, and with the skills he learned in the Army, started his own business, Wheeler TV Sales and Service which he operated for over 40 years until his retirement. Over those years, he enjoyed getting to know his customers and was even known to invite someone less fortunate than himself to his home for Thanksgiving dinner, or to give a TV or provide service to someone in need. During his leisure time, he enjoyed the outdoors and hunting, fishing, and gardening.
Don was a member of St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church in McKean and also St. George Catholic Church in Millcreek. Other memberships included St. Francis Ushers’ Club, Veterans of Foreign Wars #4789 of Northeast and #470 of Erie, and American Legion #571 of Wesleyville.
In addition to his parents, Sidney and Marie Behringer Wheeler, he was also preceded in death by his step-mother, Virginia Wheeler.
His family members that survive to mourn his loss include his wife of 53 years, Donna M. Brunner Wheeler; six children, Dan Wheeler and his wife Diane of Edinboro, Doug Wheeler and his wife Pam of McKean, Denise Zaczyk and her husband Chris of Edinboro, Sue Wheeler of McKean and her fianc??? Mike McLaughlin, Tim Wheeler and his wife Vickie of Edinboro, and Sandy Urban and her husband John of Northeast; also, two brothers, John Wheeler and his wife Mary Ann, and Tom Wheeler and his wife Gerda, all of Northeast; and 18 grandchildren, 8 great-grandchildren, and many close neighbors, friends, and other relatives.
Friends may call at the Van Matre Family Funeral Home, 306 Erie Street, Edinboro on Friday from 2-4 and 7-9pm and may attend funeral services there on Saturday morning at 10:00am officiated by Rev. Fr. Mark Nowak of St. Francis Xavier Church. Interment will follow at St. Francis Cemetery in McKean.
Because Don was a longtime caregiver for his wife who has Alzheimer’s, his family requests that memorial donations be made to the Alzheimer’s Association.