Eugene Ostrom passed away April 7th, 2012 in Schaumberg IL. Gene served in the Army Air Force as a nose gunner and flew missions over Germany, to survive those were against great odds. His Commander in the European theater was none other than Jimmy Stewart. Gene will be missed by his friends and comrades of the VFW and was truly a part of the greatest generation.
Gene’s impact on Marco Island will remain as he was instrumental in founding the local VFW post 6370. Gene along with Dr. Wes Johnson put in many hours to get the post started, of which just a few of those charter members still remain. Gene will be remembered as one of the Commanders and especially as the quartermaster for many years before those duties were taken over by Joseph Capilets.
Gene was born May 10th, 1924 in the Chicago area. Gene and his brother owned and operated a machine and die company for many years in Illinois. As a scuba diver, Gene organized the first Underwater Search and Rescue Team in the Chicago area in the 1960’s. From there he went on to train Police and Fire Departments for these types of missions.
Gene moved to Marco Island full-time in 1986. His wife Emma worked for the Mackle Brothers. His sister also worked for them. She and her husband, Larrie Davidson, lived across the street from Gene for the last 27 years. She passed away earlier in the week.
At a gathering of family, friends and VFW members, Post Commander Jim Lang remembered Gene’s patriotism and contributions to the Post 6370 and to the island. Sue Ostrom explained her father had been hospitalized for the past month and how he deeply missed the camaraderie of his friends on Marco Island. Gene Ostrom spoke about how much Marco Island had meant to him.
Gene is survived by two children, Gene Ostrom and Sue Ostrom, three granddaughters, one grandson and two great-grandchildren. The members of VFW Post 6370 Salute you Gene.