June 10, 1930 – April 2, 2014
A memorial service for Gerhard Alois Reile, a retired aerospace engineer, will be at 11 a.m. Saturday in the chapel at Fox Run, 4125 N. Buffalo St., Orchard Park.
He died April 2 in Sisters Hospital after a brief illness. He was 83.
An Elma resident, Mr. Reile worked in research and development at Carlton Controls, which was sold to Moog Inc. in 1977. He helped design and test the oxygen pressure regulators for the suits and the space capsule used in the Apollo missions to the moon.
He received awards for similar work on the space shuttle program. He retired in the early 1990s.
Born in Wasserburg Am Inn, Bavaria, Germany, he skied and hiked in the Alps as a boy. He and his family were forced from their home by the Nazis three times during World War II.
After the war, he earned a degree in accounting in Germany and worked as an accountant. A swimmer, he also worked as a lifeguard.
He came to the U.S. in 1951 and was naturalized as a U.S. citizen in 1957. He earned a bachelor’s degree in engineering from Empire State College.
His wife of 52 years, Mary Lou Urso Reile, a minister and director of special affairs for the Church of Scientology in Buffalo, died in 2005.
Survivors include three sons, Christopher T., Peter F. and Paul A.; three daughters, Patricia M. Kanowski, Teresa M. and Meg A. Snow; two sisters, Resi Schmidt and Louise Ross; 14 grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.