Herman ‘Herk’ Streitburger, 100: Army Veteran and POW, known for his humor, his faith and his positive outlook

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BEDFORD, NH – Herman C. “Herk” Streitburger, of Bedford, passed away peacefully from natural causes on May 29, 2020, at Mount Carmel Rehabilitation in Manchester, NH.

Almost 101 years old, he was born in Philadelphia, PA, on June 24, 1919, to Balbina and Herman A. Streitburger.

Herk was a U.S. Army Air Corps World War II veteran and served as a radio operator and gunner on a B24 Liberator Bomber. He was shot down on his 50th and final mission in Europe and spent a year in a German prison camp. Daringly, he was able to escape and return to Allied hands.

After returning from the War, he attended St. John’s University in Brooklyn, NY, through the GI bill. Shortly after, he met the love of his life, Jackie, on a blind date. Herk and Jackie raised four children on Long Island while he worked in Manhattan for Rheingold Brewery for 20 years. He and his family moved in 1967 to Bedford, where he expanded his marketing career at Silver Brothers. After retiring, he joined SCORE and was a mentor to small and new businesses for over 25 years.

Herk was an inspirational speaker at local schools and media outlets, talking about his POW experience and life lessons until he was 99. In addition, he was a member of the American Legion NH and the NH Ex-POW Chapter #1, Northeast POW/MIA Network, and joined the board of the Honor Flight New England after participating on the 2010 inaugural flight. Among many other honors, he was presented with the Boston Post Cane as Bedford’s oldest resident in 2018.

Herk Streitburger during a 2012 Honor Flight movie premiere. Photo/Carol Robidoux

Herk was known for his positive attitude and optimism about life. He had many admirable qualities including a great sense of humor, strong religious faith and a caring, generous spirit. He never missed a birthday, always sending a card or making a call.

He showed his generosity by donating to many local and national charities. He was also a devoted parishioner of Saint Elizabeth Seton in Bedford.

Herk attributed his longevity to the love of his family and community. He said he considered his grandchildren and great-grandchildren “his treasures.” He will be remembered as a loving father, grandfather and role model for all.

He was predeceased by his wife, Jacqueline.

“Pops” is survived by his four children, Jan Streitburger and John Consilvio of Arlington, MA, Kim Streitburger and Jim Thibeault of Stratham, NH, Guy Streitburger and Jennifer Lutzen of Bedford, NH and Ross and Mari Streitburger of Weare, NH; seven grandchildren, Guy, Jessica, Kyle, Lindsay, John, Julie and Chloe; four great-grandchildren, Guy, Grey, Maya, and Oscar; and several nieces and nephews.


SERVICES: All services will be private to the family. A celebration of Herk’s life will be held at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Herman’s memory to: Honor Flight New England, PO Box 16287, Hooksett, NH 03106.

The family thanks the staff at Mount Carmel Rehabilitation for their dedicated care.

Lambert Funeral Home & Crematory, Manchester is assisting the family with arrangements.