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March 21, 1926 ~ November 11, 2023 (age 97) 97 Years Old
John Rustemeyer, 97, formerly a long-time resident of Arlington Heights, IL, passed away peacefully on November 11, 2023, in Wheaton, IL. Born in Chicago, IL in 1926 to the late William and Elizabeth (nee Thill) Rustemeyer, he grew up in Berwyn, IL. He enlisted in the Army Air Corp during WWII and served as a sergeant until June 1946. Following his service, he attended Lewis College, earning a degree in Aviation Operations. John was hired by United Airlines in 1948 at Chicago Air Park (Midway Airport) to work as an airplane mechanic. He quickly advanced to the position of Flight Engineer, and later trained for and earned his pilot’s license, becoming a pilot for United. He ultimately achieved the position of Captain, which he held for many years flying various aircraft. It was through his flying career that he met his late wife, Sharla (nee Gambill), a flight attendant, to whom he was married for 62 years. After 38 years of service with United, John retired to enjoy more time for his favorite pastimes—family, skiing vacations, trips to the library, and eating ice cream.
John was a coach, a teacher, a mentor, but most of all he was a loving and devoted husband, father, grandfather (Poppy), son, brother, and friend. He was a man of strong, silent faith who lived by the example he was and the sacrificial life he led. He was also the neighborhood handyman. If a friend, neighbor, or family member needed help fixing something, he was the guy everyone called; he would always lend a helping hand to whomever needed it.
John is survived by his children, Mark (Stephanie) Rustemeyer, Lisa Rustemeyer, Jeff (Christy) Rustemeyer; grandchildren, Emily (Tyler), Kyle, Daniel (Claire), Kaitlyn (Kevin), Colin, Meghan, Aidan; great grandson, Graham; brother-in-law, Alan (Joetta) Gambill; sister-in-law, Alice Rustemeyer; and many loving nieces and nephews. John was preceded in death by his wife; parents; brothers, William and George Rustemeyer; and sister-in-law, Berenice Rustemeyer. Service and burial will be private. Interment will be at St. Michael the Archangel Cemetery in Palatine, IL.