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Goodwin College Alumni Tribute

Gerald "Jerry" E. Speitel,'63, '67 in Memorium — February 4, 1930 - April 7, 2014

Goodwin College alum, Gerald E. Speitel, was born February 4, 1930 in Philadelphia, PA and passed away Monday, April 7, 2014 at Shore Medical Center of Somers Point, NJ. Jerry was a 1963 graduate of Drexel University Evening College. Jerry also earned his Master's in Engineering Management from Drexel University Class of 1967. Read more.

The following article was re-printed from a 2004 Goodwin College Newsletter:

Drexel “Patriots” Provide Legacy of Service to the University, the Region and the Country

“Jerry” Speitel began his education at Drexel Institute of Technology in 1954.  He attended the historic “Evening College” while working professionally as a Surveyor and Civil Engineer.  He received a BS degree in Engineering through the “Evening College” in 1963 and an MS in Engineering Management from the College of Engineering in 1967.

Like his father and older brother Jerry served his country as a member of the U.S. Army.  The Speitels served the United States in every major conflict from WWI to Vietnam.   Before attending Drexel he was a Surveyor with the Army Corps of Engineers during the Korean Conflict.  After parlaying that experience and discipline into a Drexel degree via the Evening College; Jerry founded Gerald E. Speitel Associates in 1972, a firm specializing in Environmental Engineering, and Land Development Planning and Engineering. 

Chaplain (Col.) Edmond J. Speitel, Jr., the eldest son of Edmond J. Speitel retired from a career as an Army Chaplain in 1988.  He served in the U.S. Army from 1943 through 1946 in the Asiatic-Pacific Theater of Operations.  In 1962 he re-enlisted in the military and served in many key assignments in the United States, Germany, and Korea and as Brigade Chaplain, 3rd Brigade, 9th Infantry Division in the Republic of Vietnam.  During his service he received a number of commendations including: the Bronze Star Medal, the World War II Victory Medal, the Vietnam Service Medal and the Combat Infantryman Badge.  Father Speitel was Chaplain of Students at Drexel Institute of Technology from 1957 through 1959.

Edmond J. Speitel Sr. was the first Speitel to enter the halls of Drexel, attending the then, Drexel Institute of Technology’s Evening Division in the early 1920’s.  He studied Math, Mechanical Drawing and Blue Print Reading.  In the late 1920’s he founded Standard Structural Steel Co., the company responsible for the construction of the Pennsylvania Railroad Terminal in Philadelphia or 30th Street Station! The impressive roof structure he erected is seen today as an Architectural marvel!

Like his two sons Edmond served his country abroad in the U.S. Army during a time of conflict.  He was a member of the 406th Telegraph Battalion, signal Corps, installing poles and laying telephone wires throughout France for the duration of WWI.

Photo left: “Jerry” Speitel (left), son Edmond C. (center) and Grandson Edmond C. Jr. (right) at 30th Street Station. Gerald E. Speitel ’63, ‘67 is patriarch of a family of Drexel Alums whose lineage has earned a special place in Drexel history. Photo right: 30th Street Station under construction, Standard Structural Steel Co.

His Battalion saw action at Toul, Chateau-Thierry, Champagne-Marne, Aisne-Marne, St. Mihiel, Verdun and Meuse Argonne.

Other members of the Speitel/Drexel family include Christian Noller Jr., father of Jerry’s wife Rosemarie.   Christian studied Math, English, engineering drawings and Metallurgy at Drexel Institute of Art Science and Industry’s Evening Division in the late 1920’s.  A trained machinist and specialty welder, Noller founded Metal Engineering & Welding Co., Inc.  He was a key contractor for the Navy at the Philadelphia Navy Yard during WWII having made repairs to the U.S.S. Kitty Hawk while in dock.

Edmond C. Speitel, P.E., Jerry’s son, received a BSCE (Civil Engineering) degree in 1978 and an MS in Engineering Management, 1982 from Drexel University.  A specialist in land planning and engineering, and a recognized Forensic Engineering Expert, Edmond is also Founder and Principle of Speitel & Speitel, Inc., a consulting engineering firm in Gibbsboro, NJ.

Edmond’s son, Jerry’s grandson, Edmond C. Speitel Jr. graduated from Drexel University in 2002 with a BS in Marketing.  Formerly a Property Analyst at Speitel & Speitel, Inc., he is now a Project Coordinator at The Walters Group, specializing in evaluating the feasibility of new projects and coordinating land development project execution.

Jerry has been a successful and important member of the Engineering community in the Philadelphia area. He was elected by the Engineering and Technical Societies of the Delaware Valley as the 1990 Delaware Valley Engineer of the Year.

He has held a number of high profile positions including: Vice President and National Director of Business Development for BCM Engineers (the firm that acquired Speitel Associates), President of the New Jersey Consulting Engineers Council, National Director of the American Consulting Engineers Council, President of the South Jersey Branch and New Jersey Section of the American Society of Civil Engineers, National Director and Vice President of the American Society of Civil Engineers, and Diplomat by both the National Academy of Forensic Engineers and the Academy of Environmental Engineers.

Jerry has been a generous supporter of Drexel University; an equally generous and vocal advocate of the Goodwin College, (formerly Evening College,) and its non-traditional, adult-learners.  He has been recognized on numerous occasions for his tireless dedication and is the recipient of  many honors including: the Drexel Evening College Outstanding Alumni Award, Drexel Evening College Honor Man of the Year, the Key “D” Award and the Mary S. Irick Drexel Medal.