Fred Ruggeri, 78, of Ottawa, passed away Thursday July 1, 2021 at OSF St. Francis Medical Center in Peoria.
A Memorial service will be held Tuesday, July 6, at 11:00 am at the Ottawa Funeral Home with Rev. David Kipfer officiating. Military Honors will take place immediately after prayers. A visitation will take place from 10:00 am until 11:00 am at the funeral home.
Fred was born February 11, 1943, in Naugatuck, CT to Ferdnando and Dorothy (Mack) Ruggeri. He married Rosemary (Wilhelm) Beruehler in Florida.
Fred joined the U.S. Air Force 2 weeks after graduating from Sacred Heart High School in a little town in Connecticut. He served with distinction throughout the world beginning as an Aircraft Electrical Repair Technician at Wheelus Air Base, Tripoli, Libya in 1961 and culminating at Sembach Air Basr, Germany in 1988 where he was the command chief of the 601st Tactical Control Wing. During his tenure he participated in various military operations such as the “Cuban Missile Crises”, four tours in Vietnam, and Witness to the falling og the Berlin Wall. After working as an aircraft electrical technician for 18 years his Air Force career switched tacks to the educational field and he becam a Professional Military Instructor at the Non-Commissioned Officers Academy at Kapone Air Station, Germany, where, after 4 years as an instructor and director of education, he became the Academy’s Vice Commandant, and subsequently the Chief of all Air Force Professional Military Education for Europe. His decorations include The Air Force Achievement Medal, the Air Force Commndation Medal with 2 Oak Leaf Clusters, and the Air Force Meritorious Service Medal with 3 oak leaf clusters, to name a few.
Fred and his lovely wife Rosemary (formally Rosemary Wilhelm) moved to Ottawa from Lakeland Florida in February of 2021 to be closer to Rosemary’s family.
He is survived by his wife, Rosemary; his two daughters, Lisa Williams and Lorri Ruggeri both of Florida; his three step-children, Curt (Roz) Sesto, Julie Sesto, and Scott Sesto; six grandchildren, Charlie and Cody Renkosik, Mattie and Danny Horwitch, Emily Watts and Lee Dawber; five great grandchildren, Lennie, Crosby, Baylor, and Sonny Lee Renkosik and Dawson Horwitch; his five sisters, Kathy Ishmael of Georgia, Susan Jean Thornton of Connecticut, Linda Purcell of New Jersey, Laurie Ellen Ardizzowe Sister of Connecticut, and Traci Ann Flynn of New York; his sisters in law, Madame Nicole Le Grande of France and Mary Ellen Corrigan; and his brother in law, Jean Francis Ricou of France.
Fred was preceded in death by his parents, his brother in law, Vern Corrigan; and his sister in law, Madam Solal.
Memorials may be directed to St. Jude's or the American Legion.
To send flowers to Fred's family, please visit our floral store.