82, passed away on June 8th in Kalamazoo, MI. Born in Goldberg, Silesia, Germany on September 2, 1935, he immigrated to the United States in 1960. Werner trained as master tradesman in Germany in the areas of building, painting, refinishing wood and decorating. He had an amazing eye for color, often mixing paints like a magic potion, to get just the right hue. Through his expertise and a boundless German work ethic, he built a successful remodeling business in the Kalamazoo area. His work and talents were highly respected by his many loyal customers. Werner was a proud American citizen who never forgot the veterans that liberated Germany and held a deep appreciation for freedom and liberty. He loved this country with a passion and came here with dreams of carving out a better life for himself and his family. His proudest achievement was raising four children who all graduated from college and went on to build successful careers and businesses of their own. He taught them to always do the right thing, take pride in everything they do, and leave a place better than how they found it. Werner's life was shaped by the violence and trauma he experienced as a child during World War II. He had a deep reverence for life, particularly evident in his love of animals. He would rescue animals of all kinds and was always bringing home an injured creature to care for even saving a freezing opossum by wrapping it in his coat and holding it until it got warm. Coming from extreme poverty, Werner had enduring compassion for the less fortunate - truly giving the coat off his back and all the money in his wallet when he saw a person in need. Werner enjoyed participating in games and sports with his kids and grandkids. He loved soccer, and started Kalamazoo's first team when he found there wasn't a way for his sons to play. And when he realized they needed someone to play against, he created the second team. He loved sailing and running with his kids, and even strapped on roller blades at age 60 to learn to skate with his daughter. Werner was never happier than when walking or playing with his grandchildren and dogs in the woods. A man who was always moving and talking, he found unending patience with his grandkids, often going for long walks and just standing with them as they dug up rocks or picked flowers. They were his "sweethearts" and he treasured them. He leaves behind his beloved children and their spouses, Melanie (Tim) de Vries; Mark Ulbrich; Eric (Betsy) Ulbrich; and Michael (Hilary) Ulbrich, his grandchildren: Lauren and Claire de Vries; Abigail, Grace and Emma Ulbrich; and Eli, Levi, Wyatt and Tove Ulbrich, his brother Horst (Marianne) Ulbrich and sister Angelica Moser (of Germany) as well as his best buddy his dog Kelby. He was proceeded in death by his sister, Hetta Ulbrich (also of Germany) and his wife of 49 years, Hilde Ulbrich, as well as a lifetime of beloved animal companions. A celebration of his life is being planned. In the meantime, his children ask that all who knew him, or want to honor him, remember him in their own way.