85, of St. Louis Park, MN, passed away peacefully on Saturday, October 7, 2017, at The Villa in St. Louis Park.
Bill was born in Kiel, Germany on October 29, 1931 to Hans-Willi Wittorf and Rachel Holkvitz. He went to school and grew up in Neumunster, Germany. After graduating, he went to Trade School to learn welding and the blacksmith trade, at the same time going to school majoring in Welding Engineering.
On December 15, 1951, he boarded the “Queen Mary” ship to travel to the United Stated. After enduring a very stormy sea, he arrived in New York. From there, he traveled by train to Iowa where his aunt Catharine lived. He worked for Mr. Bunz, who sponsored his coming to America. Later he had his own blacksmith shop.
In July 1954, Bill was united in marriage to Mary Lou Todd. To this union five children were born. Bob, Connie, Helga, Kathy, and Karl. After farming for several years, they moved to Springfield , MO. From Missouri, they moved to Minnesota.
Bill worked as an Industrial Welding Engineer for several years, writing the welding standards for the guns that were mounted on the U.S. Navy ships.
Bill Married Sharon Stanton in August 1970.
In February 1973, Bill started Northern Electrode Products Company, selling welding supplies to maintenance shops.
In July 1977, fasteners and industrial supplies were added to the sales products. A building was purchased to stock all the supplies needed for the expansion of the business. Bob joined his father in the business. In March 1980 the business name was changed to N-E-P Corporation, which it still is today. Bill was preceded in death by his parents; his sister, Helga; and brother-in-law, Reiner Bellmann.
He is survived by his wife, Sharon; his five children and their spouses; ten grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren.
Since Bill would have been 86 years of age on October 29, 2017, we decided we would have a Birthday Party for Bill on that day. The Birthday Party will be held at the Cremation Society of MN, 7110 France Ave S, Edina MN 55435. There will be lunch and birthday cake served from 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM.