Feb. 27, 2013
Gale B. Matelic, 73, died Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, at his home.
Born Oct. 8, 1939, a son of the late John and Clara Sedlich Matelic, he was a career Army officer, beginning his military career in 1957 as an Illinois National Guardsman until he enlisted for active duty in the U.S. Army.
He served in Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Okinawa, Philippines, Panama and state side.
He was seriously wounded in action and spent 14 months in the hospital.
He was awarded two Bronze medals w/v device; two purple hearts; meritorious service medal (2 OLC); Army commendation medal (1 OLC); Presidential unit citation, meritorious unit commendation, National defense service medal; Vietnam service medal; Vietnam campaign medal w/60 device; Vietnamese cross of gallantry w/palm; Combat infrantryman badge; parachute badge; expert infantry badge; Vietnam jump wings; Thailand jump wings; Philippine jump wings; Armed Forces reserve medal; Army service ribbon; and Overseas service ribbon and a special commendation from a private Chinese Army in Vietnam. A lifelong member of St. John the Baptist Catholic Church, Knights of Columbus, Moose Lodge, lifetime member of VFW Post 5764, member of Disabled Veterans, served as West Frankfort Merit Board Secretary for 10 years, on the Board of Directors for Bend of the Rivers, Relay for Life, numerous civic organizations and fishing and bass clubs, he graduated from Frankfort Community High School in 1958 and earned his bachelor’s degree in political science and business from Chaminade College while stationed in Oahu, Hawaii.
Survivors include his wife, Judy Baker Matelic, former Princeton resident; stepchildren, Wes and Laurie Taylor and Terri Taylor; grandchildren, Ryan Taylor, Kassie and Kaleb Johnson, Caitlin and Luke Cash, Ben Burroughs, Payton Taylor; and great-grandson, Aiden Taylor, all of West Frankfort, Ill.
Funeral services will be conducted Thursday, Feb. 28, at 10 a.m. at St. John the Baptist Church in West Frankfort, Ill., with Fr. Sean Palas officiating.
Military rites will be conducted at a later date with interment in St. John’s Catholic Cemetery in West Frankfort, Ill.
Visitation will be from 5 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at Union Funeral Home in West Frankfort, Ill.
Expressions of sympathy may take the form of contributions to St. John the Baptist Catholic School in West Frankfort, Ill.
Online condolences may be sent at www.unionfh.com