Patrick McCue Photography
If you asked Charles Gribi to name his life’s greatest achievements, he would say:
Loving father of four children, devoted husband of Marian (Hartung) Gribi for 75 years, and a Bombardier in the 8th Air Force who flew 31 missions in a B-24 in Europe during WWII. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) and Air Medal with five clusters, each cluster representing an air battle.
But those lucky four kids - Micky Dasenbrock, Tony Gribi, Mary Beth Rampleman and Gerri Gribi would have a lot to add!
Our Dad started life in 1922 in Riverside at the western edge of Cincinnati. Despite working numerous jobs from an early age to help support his family during the Great Depression, he was an outstanding student and football player for Roger Bacon High School.
Charles won a scholarship to attend Xavier University, but this straight-A student’s college career was interrupted when he enlisted in the US Army Air Corps at the start of WWII.
He worked many years as an insurance agent for Allstate, and was awarded the prestigious Honor Ring too many times to recall. By the time of his retirement, he was so trusted and respected that he was insuring second and third generations of the same families.
He was active in retirement, volunteering as a Ranger at Losantiville Country Club, and making school presentations about his WWII experiences. Even into his 80’s, he was helping maintain the computer lab at Sherwood Elementary School, and in his 90’s he was still enjoying golf. He and his youngest daughter Gerri a history major - built and maintain a website about his WWII experiences at CharlieGribi.com.
With a sharp mind and a great knack for telling a story, Charles was frequently interviewed about WWII for documentaries and even about the 1937 Flood with which his family had personal experience, as their home on Riverside had been washed away during that year.
His Attitude of Gratitude was infectious. A story he liked to tell was about the day one of his children asked him if the family was rich. He had said “Yes, we’re rich and someday we might even have money.”
His was a rich life, ours is a rich life, and his legacy is worth more than gold to his children, grand-children, great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchild. There is no higher praise, no better example that could be set, than to say: Charles Gribi was a really good man.
Dad, we're gonna miss you.