Gary D. Deutsch, 82, Columbia City, died at 6:16 p.m. Tuesday, April 21, 2020, at Parkview Regional Medical Center, Fort Wayne. He had been battling cancer.
He was born April 29, 1937, in Whitley County, a son of the late Clifford F. and Velma L. “Bonnie” (Judd) Deutsch. His formative years were spent on a farm in Columbia Township. He graduated from Columbia City High School in 1956. He then attended International Harvester Journeyman School.
On Aug. 2, 1959, he was united in marriage to Emily V. Carpenter. They have always made their home in Columbia City.
He worked 32 years for International Harvester as a carpenter. Then from 1989 until the mid-90s, he was the owner-operator of Deutsch Construction. He also assisted his wife Emily with the operation of Deutsch Boarding Kennels since 1972.
Throughout his life, he had a great fondness for children who he enjoyed being with beginning with his children and later his grandchildren and great-grandchildren. He was a regular at their school events, giving his support and encouragement. His loving and caring character led him to befriend many children at the church he attended. He liked and had several Hafflinger draft horses, with which he participated in horse pulling competitions.
He was a member of the Oak Grove Church of God and a former member of the Whitley County Coon Hunters’ Association. An avid fisherman, he found relaxation being on the water.
Gary is survived by his wife: Emily; his children: Bradley D. (Trudy) Deutsch, W. Todd (Debbie) Deutsch, Julie (Mark) Rethlake, all of Columbia City; Debra Rice (Jeff) Scheeler, Kendallville; and Steve (Robbin) Rice, Fort Wayne; 13 grandchildren; 12 great-grandchildren; and a sister-in-law: Nancy Deutsch, S.C.
Additionally, he was preceded in death by two sisters: Nancy Line and Janice Lowe; and a brother: Donald Deutsch.
A private family service will be held at Smith and Sons Funeral Home, Columbia City.
Burial will take place at a later date at the Oak Grove Cemetery. When the COVID-19 restrictions are lifted, a memorial service will be scheduled.
Preferred memorials are to the Humane Society of Whitley County or the Oak Grove Church of God.