Clifford Thomas “Cliff” Trautman, 92, of Ohio Veterans Home in Sandusky, and formerly, of Norwalk, died Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012, in Veterans Home.
Cliff was born Dec. 10, 1919, in Sandusky, son of the late Howard and Verna (Francis) Trautman. He lived in the Sandusky and Norwalk area for most of his life, except for 8 years in Chicago and a few winters in Fort Myers, Fla.
He served in the U.S. Navy aboard the USS Canberra during World War II. He was a truck driver for more than 40 years with Southern Express and ICX, retiring in 1981 after receiving several awards for safe driving.
Cliff never met anyone he couldn’t talk to, and always had plenty of stories to tell. He was a life member of American Legion Posts 41, of Norwalk, Ohio and Post 83, of Sandusky, VFW Post 2743, Norwalk, Eagles Aerie 711, Norwalk, Teamsters Union Local 710, and St. Paul Catholic Church, Norwalk.
He and his late wife, Mary, enjoyed drag racing, with Cliff winning many races in Ohio, Tennessee, and Florida. They also enjoyed NASCAR and cheering on their favorite drivers. Cliff was interested in all cars, especially the Ford Mustang. On his 1965 black Mustang that he raced, he had his grandchildren’s names painted on for good luck.
After retirement, he and Mary travelled extensively, taking cruises all over the world. He also liked fishing, gambling and spending time with his family.
He is survived by his four grandchildren, Julee (Rick) Fries, of Norwalk, Lisa (Patrick) Schultz, of Columbus, Lori (Randy) Wheeler, of Norwalk, and Joe Trautman, of Vermilion;12 great-grandchildren; and one great-great-grandson; by his daughters-in-law, Carol Trautman and Gretchen (Bill) Landoll, of Norwalk; brothers, Victor, Vincent, Robert “Bud” (Agnes), and Frank (Judy) Trautman, all of Sandusky; his sisters, Betty Laws, Sister Rose Therese, of the Order of the Discalsed Carmelites (Helen Wobser), and Patricia Neill, all of Sandusky; and numerous nieces, nephews and great-nieces and great-nephews. He was affectionately known as ‘Grandpa Truck.”
He was preceded in death by the love of his life, Mary (Gfell), to whom he was married 70 years; sons, Clifford Thomas “Tom” Jr. in 1972, Dale in 2010; his parents; brother, Howard “Bunk” Trautman; and sisters, Shirley Podgurski, Mary Baker and Margaret in infancy.
At Cliff's request, cremation will take place and burial will be with Mary at Woodlawn Cemetery. Friends may call 2-5 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 16, at Walker Funeral Home, 98 W. Main St., Norwalk. Mass of Christian Burial will be at 1 p.m. Monday, Sept. 17, at St. Paul Catholic Church, 91 E. Main St., Norwalk. Msg. Kenneth Morman will officiate.
Memorial contributions may be made to Stein Hospice Service, 1200 Sycamore Line, Sandusky, OH 44870.
Condolences may be made at edwalkerfuneralhome.com.