He was born May 21, 1924 in Peru, N.Y., the son of Harry and Georgiana (Gonyea) Wood. The family moved to Lake Placid, where he attended Lake Placid Central School.
He served in World War II from July 1943 through December 1945. He was with the 461st Anti-Aircraft Battalion attached to the First Army in France. He earned five Battle Stars representing major battles from Omaha Beach to Germany. In 2009 on Veterans Day, the Ambassador of France presented Bert with the French Legion of Honor Diploma signed by President Sarkozy and the French Medal of Honor, the highest honor of France going back to Napoleon.
Upon honorable discharge, he received his high school diploma and went to Milwaukee School of Engineering, graduating in 1948. He joined the IBEW, going to work for W.W. Gettys Contracting Inc. as a journeyman, then foreman, and in 1958 became their estimator and buyer. A few years later, he became a part owner, and in 1976 W.E. Electric Contracting was formed, which he ran until 1995, at which time he retired and dissolved the company.
Bert had many interests over the years starting with his love of sports, pitching for the Majestics after the war. Moving to Plattsburgh, he bowled at the Elks Lodge, golfing at Plattsburgh, Indianwood, Fla., and then at Craig Wood Golf Club in Lake Placid where he got a hole-in-one on a par 3 hole. The winter weekends were spent cross-country skiing. Another interest was antique automobile restoration: his first was a 1924 Model T Ford, the last was a 1962 Pontiac Boneville, with many others in between. In 1980, Bert was a volunteer for the Winter Olympics at the bobrun. One of his last interests was collecting coins and stamps and their history. He also enjoyed watching the History Channel.
He was a 55-year, Life Member of the BPOE Lodge 621, a friend of ENF; a 63-year member of IBE Inc.; 35-year member of the American Legion, Post 326, Lake Placid; life member of the LPHS Alumni Association; for years he had been a member of the Antique Auto Club of America, the Pontiac Oakland Club International, and a member of AARP. Bert was proud to be a charter member of the National World War II Museum and the French Legion of Honor Society.
Bert is survived by his wife, Alice (Holt Colby) Wood; his former wife, Shirley (Reed) Wood, mother of Bert’s three children: Fred Gary Wood and his wife Pat of Novi, Mich., Pamela Corcoran and her husband Terry of Maitland, Fla., and Steven Wood and his wife Joanne of Longs, S.C.; seven grandchildren: Kristen Sobella, Courtney McClain, Andrew Corcoran, Mandy West, Kerry Wood, Cassandra Parah and Robert Wood; five great-grandchildren: Dylan Murphy, Brittney Straits, Amber West, Hunter West and Natalee Parah; and three nephews: Carl Wood, Harrison Wood and Terry Wood.
He was predeceased by his parents; his brothers Donald Wood, Harrison Wood and John Wood; his sister, Theresa Wood; his nephews, Carl Harrison and John Wood.
Calling hours will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. on Friday, July 29 at the Clark Funeral Home in Lake Placid. A funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, July 30 at the Adirondack Community Church in Lake Placid. Burial will follow at North Elba Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his memory to the Treasure Coast Hospice, 1201 SE Indian St., Stuart, FL 34997; Cancer Research for MDS and Leukemia; or the National World War II Museum, 945 Magazine St., New Orleans, LA 70130.