William James Oberthur, 95, Sheridan, passed away Monday evening, Aug. 30, 2021, at Harbour Manor in Noblesville.
Born Feb. 19, 1926, in Indianapolis, he was the son of the late Frank William and Gladys Elizabeth (Rhodes) Oberthur.
Mr. Oberthur grew up in the Indianapolis neighborhood of Brightwood and was a 1943 graduate of Arsenal Tech High School. During his teen years, he worked at the Standard Grocery Store in Brightwood. Following graduation, he hired on at PR Mallory in Indianapolis. While the U.S. was still deeply entrenched in World War II, his role as a Jr. War Worker was as a parts cleaner for their Washington Street facility. In 1947, Mr. Oberthur took an entry level position with the U.S. Post Office in Indianapolis as a substitute clerk at the main office. That position would turn out to be the beginning of a long and dedicated career. He worked his way through the ranks during his 28 years with the Post Office, retiring in 1975. During those years, Mr. Oberthur held many positions including Superintendent of the Glendale Branch, where he was their “Jack of all trades,” doing everything from office work to running the front counter.
On Aug. 1, 1954, he married Mary Elizabeth. She preceded him in death on April 5, 2006.
As with many who flirt with retirement, they find themselves with a great deal of time on their hands, and so was the case with Mr. Oberthur. He quickly found a new career that helped with that problem, working as a teller at the American State Bank. This was the perfect fit for Mr. Oberthur. He was able to continue to serve his community and keep up with everyone who visited the bank to do business. He worked the walk-up window at the bank in his trademark white shirt and bow tie until 1984, when he decided to give retirement another try.
It wasn’t always work, work, work with Mr. Oberthur. He was an avid gardener and loved horseback riding, teaching both of his daughters to ride as well. He also enjoyed ballroom dancing. His talents led him to become an Arthur Murry Bronze Medalist.
He was a member of the Sheridan First United Methodist Church. Mr. Oberthur was also a founding member of the Circle City Conservation Club Inc., located in Brown County. He, along with several of his colleagues from the Post Office, formed the initial membership roster. He served as the group’s Secretary and Treasurer for many years.
Survivors include his daughters, Elizabeth Ellen (William) Caldwell of Cedar Rapids, Iowa and Laura Elaine (Michael) Oberthur-Johnson of Terhune; grandson, Christopher William Caldwell; nephew, Mike Oberthur of Indianapolis; sister-in-law, Barbara Oberthur of Indianapolis; and by his feline BFF, Gee Wiz.
Other than his wife, he was preceded in death by his parents; and his brother, Charles Oberthur.
Graveside Services are scheduled for 10:30 a.m. on Friday, Sept. 3, 2021, at Spring Valley Cemetery, 5730 N. Post Road, Indianapolis. Pastor and family friend, Greg Townsend will be officiating. Arrangements have been entrusted to Kercheval Funeral Home in Sheridan.
Memorial contributions may be presented to Spring Valley Cemetery.