Charlize Wolfinger Obituary, Death – After a long and successful career in the railroad industry, Charles (Chud) H. Wolfinger retired and became an active supporter of local, state, and federal parks in and around the Chester County area. On January 17, 2012, Charles (Chud) H. Wolfinger passed away from congestive heart failure. He was 92. Chud went to work for the Pennsylvania Railroad (PRR) in New York after graduating from Haverford College in 1940.
It was there that he met the woman who would one day become his wife, Mary Ellen Lauer (Mel). In 1941, when the United States entered the war, Chud joined in the Navy and eventually became a lieutenant commander on a ship that was stationed in the South Pacific. After returning home, Chud wed Mel and went back to work for the PRR. He rose through the ranks, eventually becoming Vice President of the Lehigh Valley Railroad and Assistant Vice President of Conrail before retiring in 1979. Chud worked until 1979.
From 1972 through 1977, Chud was a member of the Valley Forge State Park Commission. At that time, the state of Pennsylvania was in the process of turning over management of the park to the federal government. After he retired, he began working to ensure that the historical significance of Valley Forge National Historical Park, which was the location of Washington’s army during the winter, would be maintained. By rallying the objections of other veterans and another veteran who wanted to build a revolutionary war museum there, he was able to assist in derailing a scheme to establish a veterans’ cemetery in the Park. In recognition of his contributions, the National Park Service established the “Wolfinger Trail” inside the park in the year 2009.