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Wilbert Joseph Derise passed away at home on Friday, Jan. 3, 2014. He was 95 years old and lived independently up until the time of his recent illness.
Growing up during the Great Depression, Mr. Derise was raised in a family of nine children; he was the second-oldest child. Early in life he learned the meaning of hard work and often spoke of working "behind the mules" from sun-up to sundown. His working life included farming, military service, manufacturing and construction jobs. He was a member of The United Brotherhood of Carpenters, Local 1078 for over 50 years, and retired as a journeyman from carpentry in 1979.
He lived in Fredericksburg from 1952 until his death, but always considered Louisiana, his state of birth, his real Acadian home. He was a member of Our Lady of the Lake Catholic Church in Delcambre, La.
He was discharged from the U.S. Army in 1945, where he served in the Pacific for four years, and was in Guadalcanal, the Russell Islands, Borneo and the Marianas.
He met and married Ruth Spotswood Wiltshire, his wife of 64 years, when he was stationed at Fort Meade, Md. She predeceased him in January 2000.
Mr. Derise is survived by two sons, Sidney David Derise (Kathy) of Fredericksburg and Edwin Wilbert Derise (Kimberly) of Ellicott City, Md.; four grandchildren, Valorie, Jessica, Elizabeth and David; and one great-grandchild, Violet; a brother, Grady Derise of Erath, La.; and two sisters, Leona "Peewee" Broussard of Delcambre, and Dorothy "Dot" Choplin of St. Martinsville, La.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Domonick and Stella LeMaire Derise; one brother, John Derise; and four sisters, Louise Landry, Janese LeBlanc, Mildred Falgout and Josephine Miguez.
The family will receive friends from 5 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 8, at Covenant Funeral Service, Fredericksburg.
A graveside service will be held at noon on Thursday, Jan. 9, at Quantico National Cemetery.
Online guest book is at covenantfuneralservice.com.