GEORGE THOMAS HEBBEL

George Hebbel was born March 14, 1923 in Brooklyn, New York and died August 22, 2017 in his north Wilmington home of 59 years with the love and support of his children and Compassionate Care Hospice. He grew up in Broad Channel, NY, a small island of converted summer bungalows in the middle of Jamaica Bay, New York and attended St. Virgilius Elementary School. He learned his lifelong love of the bay and most things aquatic-swimming, crabbing, sailing and clamming with his toes- growing up in Broad Channel. He was the youngest son of Charles, Jr. and Lillian (Reutlingschoefer) Hebbel who predeceased him. His brother Charles, III, sister Margaret and infant brother Francis X. as well as his son-in-law Jimmy Wilson also predeceased him. After graduating from John Adams High School he enlisted in the Army and trained as a Fighter Pilot with the 27th Fighter Group. He was stationed in Corsica during World War II. On September 9, 1944 his P-47 Thunderbolt was shot down on a mission behind enemy lines in German occupied France. With the help of a local farmer who hid him in a secret attic room, and the French Resistance, who disguised him and got him to Switzerland, he was able to be reunited with his unit. He was honorably discharged as a 1st Lieutenant and, after returning to Broad Channel, met Sabina Heslin at a club in Rockaway Beach. They were married at St. Vincent Ferrer RC Church in Manhattan on June 19, 1948. Taking advantage of the GI Bill of Rights, George attended and graduated from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, NY with a BS in Chemical Engineering. He moved to New Jersey with Celanese Corporation and then in 1959 to Brandywine Hundred in Wilmington, Delaware with Allied (General) Chemical from which he retired as Production Supervisor in 1987. Along the way he and Sabina had five children: Sean (Deb), Kerry (Marty) Mullane, Meegan Harman, Tara (Keith) Strouss and Moira (Jeff) O’Connor; 13 grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren. He was also a loving father figure to several more. He was a man of varied interests -biking, gardening, aeration, kayaking into his 90’s and travelling. He especially loved vacationing in Stone Harbor, New Jersey. He maintained his interest in fishing-especially salt water fishing and kept aquaria throughout his life. He was a member of the American Killifish Association and he belonged to DelVets Post#1, and the American Legion. He led a long and active life showing his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren curiosity about the world. He was a caring and compassionate man. He especially showed this in his decade long care of his wife Sabina before she died of dementia related causes in February 2011 after 62 years of marriage. His active mind and his ability to be current with technology and national and international events will be missed by all. A celebration of the long life of this humble man will be held Friday evening August 25, 2017 from 6:00-8:00 p.m. at McCrery and Harra Funeral Home, 3924 Concord Pike, Wilmington, DE 19803. Mass of Christian Burial will be Saturday August 26, 2017 10:30 a.m. at Immaculate Heart of Mary Church 4701 Weldin Road, Wilmington, DE 19803 with a luncheon to follow at DelVets Post #!, Veterans Drive in Wilmington. A private committal service will be held Monday August 28th at the Delaware Veterans Cemetery. Although he loved flowers and gardens please consider donating to the Home of the Brave, (services for homeless veterans) 6632 Sharps Rd., Milford, DE. 19963, or the Cancer Support Community 4810 Lancaster Pike, Wilmington, DE. 19807. To send condolences visit: www.mccreryadharra.com