In loving memory of Helmut August Glanz, who passed away at home on Monday, August 31st, 2020 at 98 years old. Helmut was born in Einbeck, Germany, to August Glanz and Johanna (nee Bodenhagen) Glanz, both predeceased. He was the last survivor of the six children in his family. Helmut was the beloved husband of Irmgard Bernadette Pfleger Glanz and the loving father of Gordon (Gail) and Jenny. He was the proud, loving Opa of Richard (Maria) and Cynthia (Jordan) and adoring Great Opa of Rachael, Michael, and Katherine.
In his youth, Helmut was a well-known professional soccer player in Germany. He studied mechanical engineering and was drafted into the German Navy in World War II as a submarine mechanic. During the early part of the war, he survived the torpedoing and subsequent sinking of his destroyer ship in the Atlantic Ocean. He was rescued from the water by a German ship. In 1943, he survived the torpedoing and subsequent sinking of his submarine, requiring him to swim in the cold North Sea, north of Russia, in January. He was picked up by an English warship, which was helmed by a very compassionate English captain who ensured that Helmut was given proper care for his injuries. Once the English warship docked, Helmut became a prisoner of war. He was a prisoner of war for 5 years, and was not released until two years past the end of the war.
Helmut immigrated to Canada in 1951, and married Irmgard in November, 1955. Helmut’s mother-in-law and father-in-law, Anna and Stephan Pfleger of Germany, took an instant liking to him and were enormously generous with praise and respect for him. He gave his children a wonderful upbringing and supported post-secondary educations. He always put family first, and had an impressive work ethic. He worked for INCO through to his retirement.
The late Father Heinrichs of the German language St. Boniface Catholic Church in Sudbury always praised Helmut as his best Catholic, despite Helmut being raised in the Protestant faith. In later years, he attended Christ the King Church. In 1976, Helmut and Irmgard bought a cottage on Ranger Bay of the French River, where they enjoyed their summers. He was an avid gardener and kept up a large garden at the cottage until his late 80s. Helmut and Irmgard enjoyed the Snowbird life, travelling to Daytona Beach Shores every winter up until two years ago. Helmut loved to watch the fisherman out on the Sunglow Pier while he was sitting in the sun on the condo balcony overlooking the ocean.
Helmut was afflicted with Alzheimer Disease for the last 10 years of his life. Despite this cruel and ugly disease, he continued to mow the lawn and shovel the snow into his mid-nineties. By this time, the nastiness of the disease became more pronounced, and he was not always the quiet, gentle, and good man he had always been. However, thankfully, we did see flashes of his former self to the end.
Helmut’s wish was to live his life, right to the end, in his own home with Irmgard. With Jenny’s persistence and care, Helmut’s wish was fulfilled. He passed peacefully at home.
A memorial service will be held at a later date due to COVID-19 and current health issues within the family. A Celebration of Life for Helmut will be arranged by the family at a later date. Donations to Christ the King Church or the Sudbury Chapter of the Alzheimer Society would be appreciated. Special thanks to Sam from Bayshore, who treated Helmut with great care, dignity, and respect. Arrangements entrusted to the Lougheed Funeral Home, www.lougheed.org.