Jack Ploehn, 80, US Army veteran awarded the National Defense Service Medal

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Jack Lee Ploehn
Jack Lee Ploehn

Jack Lee Ploehn, of Wilmington, died at his home on Nov. 14, 2015, surrounded by his wife, daughters and grandchildren. He was 80.

Jack was born to Max and Leona Ploehn in LaPorte, Indiana on March 26, 1935.

Jack was a veteran of the U.S. Army, serving in Japan, Korea and Hawaii from 1953 to 1955 and earning the National Defense Service Medal, the Korean Service Ribbon and the United Nations Service Medal.

He worked for the Whirlpool Corporation for 32 years. In 1988,  Jack was transferred from La Porte, Indiana to Atlanta, where he retired in 1994 as manager of the Whirlpool Appliance Parts Store in Norcross, Georgia. He was a resident of Duluth, Georgia when he retired, moved to Lake Hartwell, Georgia in 1996 and then in 2004 to Wilmington, where the family now resides.

Survivors include his wife, Linda, whom he married on Nov. 16, 1957, and his daughters, Julie Vigna and Peggy (Robert) Billeaud, both of Wilmington, as well as one sister, Gloria Bailey, of Las Vegas. Also surviving are his grandchildren, Anthony (Courtney) Heaps, Stephanie (Dylan) Derby, Brandon Vigna, Gabrielle Billeaud and Katelyn Billeaud, great-grandchildren, Chloe and Addison Heaps and Clayton, Cheyanne and Chassidy Derby and numerous nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents.

Jack was a member of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Wilmington, where he served as congregation president shortly after moving to Wilmington. In 2004, he joined the volunteer carpenter crew at the New Hanover County Arboretum that was so supportive during his illness. He loved working with the guys even though as of late he could only make coffee and sweep up.

Sports were his passion and he loved his Chicago Bears and St. Louis Cardinals. He enjoyed the game of golf, as well as fishing and camping with his Whirlpool buddies, family and friends.

A private family ceremony will be held at the Ash Garden at St. Paul’s Evangelical Lutheran Church in Wilmington.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the carpenter crew at the New Hanover County Arboretum, Duke University Cancer Center or St. Paul’s Evangelical Lutheran Church Roof Fund.

Please leave online condolences for the family at Wilmington Funeral & Cremation.

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