George Weiss, founder of German Fest, dies at 87

CREATED Jul 16, 2014

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BROOKFIELD -- The Milwaukee area this week mourns one of its most influential immigrants.

George Weiss, 87, founded German Fest in 1981 and worked as its treasurer until last year.
 
"A lot of the businesses here were founded by immigrants, Germans, and that's what George was very proud of all the time," said Klause Fromme, president of German Fest. "It's not only what the Germans did here but what they've contributed to Wisconsin."
 
Weiss was born and raised in a German community in Hungary. His daughter, Susan Eick, explained that George actually wore three army uniforms in his life: German, Hungarian and American. 
 
He was drafted in the German army but then arrested. In prison, he found a group of friends and dressed in Hungarian uniforms to flee the Russians.
 
"The good thing was he knew the Lord's Prayer in Hungarian," Eick quips. "That was the test."
 
Weiss moved to America and enlisted in the US Army during the Korean War.
 
He is survived by two daughters and two grandsons.