Below are just a few of the men and women in the St. Louis metro area who served our country and died of COVID-19.
St. Louis Metro’s first known COVID-19 Death: Nurse Judy Wilson-Griffin
Perinatal nurse specialist Judy Wilson-Griffon advocated for better health outcomes for at-risk mothers. She was the first person in St. Louis confirmed to die of COVID-19.
Phillip A. Catanzaro – died suddenly of COVID-19
Phillip Catanzaro died April 26 of COVID-19. After struggling with it for a month, he thought he was doing better and was looking forward to coming home to his wife of 48 years. Instead he went home to God. His family wants to thank the healthcare workers who cared so well for Phillip in his last days and they request that "In lieu of flowers, we request that you do everything you can to fight this horrific COVID virus."
Edward Wood Cissel, former Head Master of John Burroughs School
Edward Wood Cissel died on June 16th due to complications from Covid-19. He was 99 years old. Although not from St. Louis, Edward Cissell spent 19 years as the headmaster of John Burroughs School from 1967 to 1986, a pivotal time for the school. Edward Wood Cissell is missed by the hundreds of students and coworkers whose lives he touched, his many friends, his four children, grand children, and extended family.
Dr. William G. Ridgeway, M.D. Ophthalmologist for over 40 years
Dr. William Ridgeway served two years in the US Air Force as a flight surgeon with the rank of Captain before completing his residency in ophthalmology at Washington University. He decided he loved St. Louis, put down roots here, and served three generations of patients as an ophthalmologist in St. Louis and South St. Louis County. He died of COVID-19 on April 24, 2020.
Paul E. Struckhoff, Korean War Veteran
Paul passed away on April 28, 2020 at the age of 88 from complications of COVID-19. He enjoyed nothing more than a cold Stag beer, boating, and Cardinals baseball. He was an active member of the O'Fallon VFW and the Augusta American Legion.
Earl George Crenshaw – WWII Veteran
Earl Crenshaw, 99, was a fighter in life and tried his best to beat COVID-19 when he caught it at the Meramec Bluffs Assisted Living Center in Ballwin! He passed away peacefully on April 25, 2020.
Alvin George Edgell – Humanitarian, WWII & Korean War veteran
Alvin George Edgell was enjoying his golden years in health at Alexian Brothers Landsdowne Village close to his family when he was struck with COVID-19, over 6 weeks after the nursing home locked down to visitors in an effort to prevent coronavirus. Still very mentally sharp, he was using email to communicate until his last days. Al died on May 4th at the age of 96 with his son, a doctor at the hospital, by his side.
Billie “Jack” McDermott
Billie "Jack" McDermott of Bethalto Illinois died of COVID-19 after a lengthy battle with the virus on September 4, 2020 at Alton Memorial Hospital. He was 81.Billie proudly served our country in the National Guard and retired from Laclede Steel after 42 years as an electrician. He was a member of the United Steel Workers Union and served as a shop steward for many years. He was a lifetime Democrat and a member of various Church of Christ churches. Especially in his retirement, Billie enjoyed watching his grandsons in their sports, spending time at Lake of the Ozarks, fishing, family pets, and watching old westerns. Billie McDermott is missed deeply by his wife of 59 years, his two children, grandchildren, family, extended family and all his friends.
Mr. Edward Hellm, Jr.
Edward Hellm Jr. died of COVID-19 on April 27, 2020 at the age of 69. He was a veteran who'd served our country, a loving father and husband, and a retiree with lots of friends. He died alone in the hospital on a ventilator. Eddie is missed deeply by his wife, adult kids, grandkids, family, many friends, and all those who knew him.
William “Bill” C. Robertson
William "Bill" C. Robertson of Fosterburg, Illinois died from COVID-19 on Sept. 9, 2020 at Alton Memorial Hospital. He was 88 years old and left behind his wife and soulmate of 64 years.Bill was an Airforce veteran and worked at Albrecht Hamlin Chevrolet until he retired in 1996. Bill was an active member of Fosterburg Baptist Church for the last 56 years, serving as Deacon and Trustee. He also taught Sunday school and vacation bible school, and always had candy to give to the kids. Bill C. Roberts is deeply missed by his wife Virginia, their son and daughter, grand-kids, and great-grandkids. His church family misses him terribly.
Carl Edward McLittle Jr.
Carl Edward McLittle Jr. passed of COVID-19 on May 17, 2020 at the age of 74. He was a Vietnam War veteran, a loving father and grandfather, and a lifelong learner. He's missed deeply by his family, friends, and all those who knew him.
Elizabeth Quinn, a WWII military veteran from England who emigrated as a war bride and made St. Louis her home, died of complications from COVID-19 on November 13, 2020 at the age of 94. According to her obituary, "During WWII, she joined the Women’s Royal Naval Service in 1943 at age 18, serving at Bletchley Park with the codebreakers..." Elizabeth had a lifelong love of reading, serving as librarian on the first St. Louis County bookmobile in 1948-49 after the birth of her son, and working as a librarian for 35 more years until she retired. In her later years Elizabeth was still an avid reader and used the library's mobile services, coming very full circle when her photo was placed on the side of a new bookmobile.