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Obituary: Welk, Peter Martin

Age 93

In Memory of WELK, Peter Martin November 15, 1920- November 11, 2013 Peter Martin Welk, at the age of 92, passed away at 2:50pm November 11, 2013-Veterans Day (himself being a WWII Army veteran) and the 88th birthday of his beloved wife of 58 years, Carol Holton Welk. He is survived by his wife, Carol, and their five children; Peter, Stephen, Bernie, Jerry and Barbara as well as by five grandchildren; Marcia, David, Lisa, Krystal and John. Peter was born on November 15, 1920 in McHenry County, North Dakota to Russian-German immigrants from a small village in Ukraine, now called Lamonskoe. At the age of two, Peter’s family moved to Wilkie, Saskatchewan where they were wheat farmers for 16 years. At age 18, Peter moved to Spokane in search of a warmer climate and a new life with his brothers Joe, August, and Fred in an old Model T which could only go up a hill in reverse. Peter was trained as an electrical specialist on B-17s during WWII. After returning from the war he was an active participant in the Spokane business community. A real entrepreneur he founded, along with his brothers and sons, Welk Precast, Welk Brothers Metal Products, Utec Metals, ALCOBRA Metals (all in Spokane), and Ventura Hose Inc. in Oxnard, CA. In 1978-1980, Peter was nominated to receive “The Industrialist of the Year” award sponsored by the Spokane Area Development Commission and the Washington State Department of Commerce and Economic Development. This award was given to honor leaders of manufacturing companies both for their contributions to industry and to the community. In his youth, Peter attended night classes at Gonzaga University and received a degree in Religious Studies. At this time he was an active member in the Catholic young adult’s fellowship called “The Excelsior Club” where he met many life-long friends. He first set his eyes on his beautiful bride to be, Carol, in St Aloysius church in October 1954. He proposed to her there shortly afterward by slipping a ring on her finger and saying “pray for guidance”. They were married in St Louis, MO, Carol’s home town, on May 28th, 1955. Peter was an active member of the Spokane Catholic Diocese attending St Aloysius, St. Augustine’s, St. Thomas Moore, St. Anne’s and finally, Our Lady of Lourdes Cathedral, over the course of his 75 years in Spokane. Peter and Carol’s home had an open door, giving hospitality to all who came to visit or to stay. Many men and women serving in the Catholic community were frequently refreshed by hospitality in Peter and Carol’s home as well as many other beloved friends and relatives. Hundreds, if not thousands, of individuals, families, and church groups of various faiths, enjoyed fellowship, retreats, activities and fresh vegetables during the many community outings at the Welk’s Spring Creek Acres, a 160 acre farm near Ford, Washington. They formed long lasting relationships with live-in students from Mexico. They dearly love these students and their families to this day. Peter and Carol also endowed the Christus Program in its beginnings which continues to prepare men and women for part-or full-time ministry in any Christian confession. The Christus program developed into Gonzaga Universities’ The Ministry Institute - Center for Spiritual Renewal. Peter loved golf, music and a game of cards with family and friends. Piano, accordion, and the organ were among the instruments he enjoyed playing by ear in his own unique style. He will be greatly missed as a loving husband, father, grandfather, beloved brother in Christ and friend to many. There will be a Rosary and Vigil Service at Our Lady of Lourdes Cathedral, 1115 W Riverside Avenue, Spokane, at 6:00 pm on Friday, November 15, 2013 (Peter’s 93rd birthday). A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at Our Lady of Lourdes Cathedral at 2:00 pm on Saturday, November 16th. It will be followed by a reception in the church hall. You are invited to the interment service presided by Fr. Armond Nigro at 10AM, Holy Cross Cemetery, 7200 N Wall, in Spokane on Monday, November 18th. Directions to the site will be provided when you arrive at the gate. Donations can be made to the Peter Welk Memorial Fund c/o STCU, PO Box 1954, Spokane, WA 99210. To view Peter’s online memorial, please visit Arrangements entrusted to:


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