Edward Glenn Dempsey, 59, of Steinach, Germany, formerly of Terre Haute, passed away July 27, 2012, in Bad Neustadt, Germany, after a courageous battle with cancer and histiocytosis. He was born Feb. 8, 1953, in Lafayette, Ind., to Jack R. Dempsey and Joy H. Calvert Dempsey. He grew up in western Vigo County, graduating from West Vigo High School in 1971, where he demonstrated his passion for music as an active member of the Viking band, serving as the marching band’s drum major for two years.
After high school, he worked for his dad at Reiman Building Materials and Superior Fence Co. before joining the U.S. Army in 1974. He served as company clerk for E Troop, 2 Squadron 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment in Bad Kissingen, Germany. While stationed in Germany, he met Ulrike (Ulla) Maria Altfuldisch and they married in 1976. Together they operated Gasthaus Weipert from 1977–1983, sharing their love of hospitality with a wide range of clientele. They closed the business to return to Terre Haute, where Ed continued his education at Indiana State University, graduating with honors in 1986. Following graduation, he worked as general manager for five restaurants with over 300 employees. In 1988, Ed and his family returned to Germany. He worked as an executive administrator, contributing his business knowledge and bilingual skills until his early retirement in 2000 due to health issues.
Like his dad, Ed made friends easily wherever he went. He embraced the German culture and enjoyed participating in a variety of clubs and community activities, including tennis club, choir club, carnival club, and benevolence club, and volunteer firefighter. He inherited a love of cooking from his mother and enjoyed sharing good food with family and friends. Living in Europe offered Ed the opportunity to travel to several countries including France, Spain, Austria, Czech Republic, Italy, England, Denmark, Hungary and Finland. During his travels he rediscovered his passion for photography, which he developed as a teenager working at Stub Martin’s Snap Shop in Terre Haute. Additionally, he enjoyed graphic design, web development, and watching movies. Despite his health problems, Ed was able to travel back to Indiana in 2009 and 2011 to visit family and friends. He especially enjoyed reconnecting with his high school classmates during their 40th reunion last summer.
Survivors include his beloved mother, Joy of Terre Haute; son and daughter-in-law, Erik and Sabine Dempsey of Bad Bocklet, Germany; two daughters and sons-in-law, Jennifer and Michael Balling of Hohn, Germany, and Elizabeth and Marvin Spradling of JBFL, Washington; five grandchildren, Denise and Alyssa Balling, Moana Dempsey, Timothy Edward Jack Dempsey, and Julian Spradling; two devoted sisters and their husbands, Debbie and Gary Coleman of Norfolk, Va., and Susan and Bill Gresham of Shelburn; and extended family.
He was preceded in death by his father; paternal grandparents, John Edward and Ellen Marie Berry Dempsey; and maternal grandparents, Glenn and Mary Hazlett Calvert.
The Mass of Christian Burial was on July 31 at St. Nikolaus Church in Steinach, Germany. Condolences may be sent to Mrs. Joy Dempsey at P.O. Box 10478, Terre Haute, IN, 47801. The family suggests that memorial contributions for Ed be directed to the American Cancer Society or the Histiocytosis Association.