Carl Subak

Carl Hans Subak, 103, a longtime Oak Park resident, died on Feb. 6, 2022. Born in Vienna, Austria in 1919 to Marianne (nee Glaser) and Ernest Subak, he completed his secondary education at the Realgymnasium in 1937 but, following the annexation of Austria by Nazi Germany the following year, he fled the country on his own and eventually made his way to the United States. He was recruited to attend Camp Ritchie, which trained native German speakers, mainly young Jewish refugees, to serve in Europe on assignments with the U.S. Army. Working as an interpreter while stationed in Berlin’s American zone, he continued to study for his undergraduate degree in geography (Harvard University), which he completed soon after the war. After returning to the USA, he joined his sister who had settled in Seattle and, with his brother-in-law, started an import-export business in stamps and coins. In the Pacific Northwest, he enjoyed climbing and on a hike with the Seattle Mountaineers, he met his wife-to-be, Eileen Alexander. 

They moved to Chicago in 1949 and within a few years settled in Oak Park, which became their home for the next 65 years. Oak Park offered a quick commute on the el to his downtown office where he continued to work as a wholesale dealer in stamps and coins into his late 90s. He made good use of the tennis courts in the village, playing every other morning at 7 a.m. for many decades. He also enjoyed the game of bridge, which he played into his 10th decade of life. 

He is survived by his two children, Jon and Susan, and two grandchildren. The funeral service will take place at Oak Park Temple, 1235 N. Harlem Ave., on Wednesday, Feb. 9, at 2 p.m.

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