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A World War II veteran and former DODDS teacher for more than 40 years died recently from an apparent heart attack while playing golf in Germany, a DODDS spokesman said Tuesday.

Fred Welch suffered the attack while playing with friends on Heidelberg Golf Course on April 18, according to Frank O’Gara, Department of Defense Dependents Schools-Europe spokesman.

Welch was taken to a German hospital in Mannheim, where he died soon afterward.

Welch, 76, worked primarily as an industrial arts teacher, though he specialized in mechanical drawing, said Edgar Bergmann, a DODDS colleague. He finished his DODDS career as coordinator for information management centers, or libraries, in Europe.

“Fred was a friendly, open person,” Bergmann said. “He loved to eat and he loved to play golf.”

Welch and his wife, Emilie, traveled often to the Alsace region of France to sample local dishes, Bergmann said. They also loved to travel around Europe and beyond.

Welch grew up in Maryland and joined the Navy as a teenager. After his World War II service, he became a teacher and began working for the forerunner to DODDS in the mid-1950s, according to O’Gara.

Welch worked in Newfoundland; Chateauroux, France; and Wiesbaden and Karlsruhe, Germany.

A private burial service is planned in Luxembourg, his wife’s hometown. The date has not been set.


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