Heinrich Wilhelm (Heinz) Huber, 96, passed away on Sunday, August 15 at his beloved Botetourt home.
Heinz was born in Neckarsteinnach, Germany, on May 13, 1925. He was predeceased by his mother, Freida Huber, his father, Heinrich H. Huber, and his step-children Shari Lynn Savage and Larry Phillip Caudle.
In his teens Heinz’s family was transferred to Austria where he was drafted into the German Air Force as a pilot at 19 years old. He was shot down by the Russians over the former Czechoslovakia and became a prisoner of war in Siberia. After two years the American Red Cross liberated him due to health reasons and he made his way back to Heidelberg, Germany, where he worked for the American Army.
Heinz came to America in 1953, and worked as a glider instructor in Montvale, becoming a naturalized US citizen in 1957. He began working at GE in Salem in 1956 in Design Engineering where he met his future wife Elizabeth. Heinz retired after 29 years at GE.
Heinz held an oil painting workshop for 14 years in his home and painter of local scenery. A member of the early Roanoke Fine Arts Society, he painted hundreds of paintings that were sold at the Peaks of Otter and which adorn many walls in the valley and beyond.
An avid skiier since his childhood, Heinz skiied many years as a member with the Roanoke Ski Club. He was friends with ski instructor Sepp Kober at the Homestead, who came from a similar background, and skiied until he was 84.
Heinz loved hiking into his 80’s and was a self-taught, play-by-ear accordion and piano player since his teen years in Germany. He loved to entertain his family with his repertoire of songs. He was very proud of his home in Botetourt County, and spent many years beautifying it with flowers and fountains.
He is survived by his wife of 60 years, Elizabeth P. Huber; his brother Horst Huber and wife Meli of Wiesenbach, Germany; step-daughter, Karen Kessler, and beloved son-in-law Anthony S. Kessler, of Roanoke; step-grandchildren, Angelique Simurina, Daniel, Michael and Christopher Kessler; and step-great-grandchildren Rhiannon Adkins and Leia Simurina. A special thanks to his grandson Daniel who helped so much in his last years and hours.
Services will be private.
To plant a tree in memory of Heinrich Wilhelm Huber, please click here.