The Stanly News and Press (Albemarle, NC)


July 2, 2014

Rudolph Giess Jr., 88, of New London, a WWII U.S. Navy Veteran, died July 1, 2014

Wednesday, July 2, 2014 — Rudolph (Rudy) John Giess Jr., 88 years of age, of New London, passed away Tuesday, July 1, 2014, at Stanly Regional Medical Center in Albemarle.

Rudy was born October 18, 1925, in Rahway, New Jersey, to the late Rudolph John Giess Sr. and the late Rose Kerekes Giess.

The funeral mass will be at 11 a.m. on Friday, July 4, 2014, at Our Lady of the Annunciation Catholic Church, Albemarle. Officiating will be the Very Reverend Father Peter Fitzgibbons.

Rudy is survived by his sister, Gizella Meyer of Lancaster, S.C.; his brother, Joseph Giess of Little Egg Harbor, N.J.; his daughter, Gay Gail Welsh and her husband John Edward of New London, N.C.; and four stepchildren; Joseph Steele of New Milford, N.J., Alan Steele of Dunellen, N.J., Roger Steele of Wharton, N.J. and Anne Steele Corbelle of Comus, Md. Surviving family members further include;  grandsons, Lt. Commander Jonathan Baird Welsh (USN) with wife Lt. Commander Jessica Rae Welsh (USN) residing in Moorpark, Calif. and Lt. William Curtis Welsh (USN) with Nou Kou Lee residing in Misawa, Japan; and three granddaughters, Rosemary Grace Welsh Laskowski and husband Eric James of Albemarle, N.C., Kristen Lise Welsh residing in Daytona Beach, Fla. and Trinity Elizabeth Welsh of New London, N.C. Rudy also has one great-grandson, Conner Chaly Welsh; and a great-granddaughter, Ailysh Zoo Hlub Welsh.

Rudolph proudly served his country in the United States Navy during WWII. He was stationed at NTS Sampson prior to serving aboard the USS Dyson, USS Braine and then the USS Thorn. Rudy participated in several campaigns including the Battle of the Coral Sea, Layette Gulf, and the invasions of Iwo Jima and Guadalcanal, earning the Asiatic Campaign ribbon with six bronze stars.

Rudy later went on to become a Coast Guard Licensed Sea Captain and skippered Sea Explorer Ship 243, “Seahorse”, owned by the Union County, N.J. Boy Scout Council of The Boy Scouts of America and operated out of Rahway, N.J. He was awarded the Silver Beaver Award, the highest honor awarded to adults by the Boy Scouts of America, in recognition of his distinguished service and exceptional character.  

He was also a licensed pilot and enjoyed flying in his younger days. Rudolph had an amazing attitude. When things started to get bad, he would say “Better Days are coming” and worked toward that end, never giving up.

A memorial fund is being created in honor of Skipper Rudy; details to be provided later.

Hartsell Funeral Home of Albemarle is serving the Giess family.

Online condolences may be made at

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