Warren F. Burstrom age 92, of Freeport, Ill., passed away Dec. 3, 2016, at FHN Memorial Hospital in Freeport.
He was born April 11, 1924 in Chicago; son of the late Frank and Hattie (Schumann) Burstrom. He graduated from Portage Park and Schurz High Schools in Chicago, and attended Luther College until his call to serve his country.
Warren served in the United States Navy during WWII, stationed at the end of the war at Treasure Island, Calif. He holds the highest recorded score in navigation. While in the Navy he played on the Treasure Island baseball team.
He completed his B.A. at Luther College after discharge. He pursued graduate education at the University of Minnesota in Philosophy, completed a Master’s in Mathematics at Western Illinois University and continued post-graduate studies at Case Western and New Mexico State University.
Warren married Rosella (Opsand) Burstrom ‘50 on Aug. 9, 1952, in Gunder, Iowa; she passed on April 30, 1981. He married Deloris (Smedstad) Womeldorf Burstrom ‘50 on June 19, 1983.
Teaching was Warren's passion and he began his teaching career in Mt. Morris, Ill., where he also coached football, golf, and baseball. He then went on to teach at Highland Community College in Freeport beginning in 1963 and retiring in 1988. He served as chairman of the Mathematics and Science Department of Highland. He was also instrumental in the foundation of Highland's School of Nursing. Warren was also a former president of the Illinois Council of Teachers of Mathematics, and of Golden "K" Kiwanis Club. He was also a member of the Northwest Illinois Audubon Society, the Jane Addamsland Park Foundation that supports the bike path, the Highland Community College Chorale, and served on the Board of Directors for the FACC. He also volunteered and supported the Salvation Army active with the Highland College Foundation. Warren was a member of First Lutheran Church of Freeport where he served on the church council. He loved playing tennis, baseball, and bicycling as well as woodworking. Warren was known as a "storyteller par excellence."
He is survived by his wife, Deloris (Smedstad) Burstrom ‘50 of Freeport; daughters, Kathryn (Frank) Hall of Corvallis, Ore., and Ruth Burstrom ‘81(Niels Chapman) of Albuquerque, N.M.; son, Frank Burstrom of Tucson, Ariz.; step children; Vicki (Mark) Brunsvold of Edina, Minn., Mark (Holly) Womeldorf of Plymouth, Minn., Marti (Dan) Guetzlaff of Faribault, Minn., Dale (Cathy) Womeldorf of Shakopee, Minn., and Erik (Shala Cunningham) Womeldorf of Roanoke, Va.; grandchildren, Eric Hall and Anika Hall of Portland, Ore.; step grandchildren: Amanda & Sydney Brunsvold of Edina, Minn.; Pieper (Ben) Lundell of Dubuque, Iowa; Aaron (Alexis) Guetzlaff of Lenexa, Kan.; Elliott Guetzlaff of Denver; Abby Guetzlaff of Chicago; Evan Guetzlaff of Lenexa, Kan; Andrew, Jacob, Zachary and Samantha Womeldorf, Hannah and Tyler Birkholz of Minneapolis; and Wynn and Noah Womeldorf of Roanoke, Va.; step great grandchildren, Kylan and Brielle Guetzlaff, and Yeardley and Walker Lundell; nephew Greg Giles (Tracey Barrett) cousins, Barbara (Cornelius) Van Diggelen; Kim (Kathee) Stanke, and Kirk (Sue) Stanke; and many dear friends. He was preceded in death by his parents; first wife, Rosella; brother, George (Eva) Giles; and cousin, Beth Stanke.
A visitation was held Dec. 6, 2016, at Walker Mortuary in Freeport. The funeral service was Dec. 7 at First Lutheran Church in Freeport. Interment will take place at Oakland Cemetery in Freeport. A memorial fund has been established in his name with donations going to his favorite local charities listed above. Please specify if you have a preference. Condolences may be shared at www.walkermortuary.com.