Tom - April 2016      Tom - June 1945      
Thomas Francis Rettenbacher
November 9, 1923 – December 14, 2020

PFC Tom Rettenbacher served as a medic with the 61st Armored Infantry Medical Detachment. He joined the 10th Armored Division on 26 Feb 1945 just east of Saarburg as the 10th Armored was preparing for the offensive to capture the German city of Trier.

As a 21 year old soldier, Tom was assigned to the 61st AIB as a medic but had never received any medic or related training prior to being handed his medic aid kit on the battlefield in Germany. Tom tells his story of becoming a battlefield medic via an audio recording which was made on March 19, 2019.

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Thomas F. Rettenbacher (Tom), 97 passed away swiftly and peacefully on December 14, 2020.

Tom was born at home in Lincoln, Illinois in 1923 as the third child of Carl and Agnes Rettenbacher. In 1929, the family moved to the Chicago area where he later graduated from Calumet High School.

As a World War II veteran, Tom was immensely proud of his service as a medic with the Army's 10th Armored Division, receiving both a Silver Star and a Purple Heart during his tour of duty in France and Germany.

Upon returning home from his service, Tom married the love of his life, Elvira Bassi, in 1954.

Tom served as the Building Commissioner of Elk Grove Village from 1962 until his retirement in 1989. Throughout his career with the Village, Tom served as the President of Building Officials Code Administrators International (BOCA) in 1987- 88, as well as numerous boards, commissions and related work associations.

As well as a long-standing member of Elk Grove Village VFW Post 9284, he and his wife, Elvira, were original members of Queen of the Rosary parish where he served as reader at Sunday morning mass into his early 90s.

Tom was preceded in death by his wife Elvira (2017), their infant son Kurt, his parents, brothers Peter, Robert, Charles and sister Ellen.
He is survived by his three loving daughters, Mary (Steve) Halberg, Carol Stream; Karen Rettenbacher, Elk Grove Village; Judy (Tom) Williams, Carol Stream. Four grandchildren, Dawn (Dan) Di Leo, Spring Hill, TN; Tracy (Dave) Crouthamel, Coatesville, PA; Mark (Julie) Halberg South Elgin; Jake Williams, Carol Stream, and three great-grandchildren, Daniel Di Leo, Josephine Crouthamel, and Drake Di Leo.

A memorial service will be held at Queen of the Rosary, 750 W. Elk Grove Blvd, Elk Grove Village, IL at 9:30 AM on Friday, April 30th. A private interment will be at Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery, Elwood, IL.