BREHM, Ernst J., PhD

Ernst Jürgen Brehm, PhD May 26, 1923 – Sept 12, 2015 Born in East Prussia on May 26, 1923, Brehm joined the German navy in 1941. Having risen to the rank of midshipman, he became a member of the crew manning the German submarine U-187 on its maiden voyage in January 1943. Less than a month after leaving the port of Kiel, the ill-fated U-boat was sunk in the mid-Atlantic by a British destroyer. Brehm survived the incident but spent the remainder of WWII in captivity in a number of locations in both the U.K. and Canada. After a few short years working at odd jobs in Germany, Brehm immigrated to Canada in 1952. It was here that he met his wife Marion Helena Cripps, and here that he decided to pursue a higher education, going on to receive a Master’s Degree from the University of Montreal in 1956, the same year his son was born. Brehm later obtained a Ph.D. in Spanish Language and Literature from the University of Madrid, Spain. Dr. Brehm found his first teaching post at Hastings College, where his daughter was born in 1959. Shortly thereafter Brehm began work in the Department of Modern Languages at Creighton University in Omaha, where he taught Spanish, Arabic, German and Portuguese until his retirement. After moving the family to Omaha, Brehm converted to Catholicism and became a member of St. Margaret Mary’s Church where he worshipped for over 50 years. He made many dear friends there and eventually served as an usher in his retirement. He loved the church and found great solace and inspiration in it and the community. He is preceded in death by his wife Marion who died in November of 2001. Brehm was a long time member of The Friday Musicale which he joined in the mid 1960’s. The group gathered once a month on Fridays to listen to music until his admission to the Brookestone Meadows in 2014. In the beginning the club had as many as 12 members and at the end just a few dear friends. In addition to being a great lover of languages, literature, history, travel and music, Brehm was also an accomplished carpenter. His absence will be greatly felt. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made the United Nations High Commission on Refugees ( to help ease the suffering of those fleeing from war. SERVICES will be held this Thursday, September 17, 2015, with a VISITATION starting at 1:00pm and a prayer vigil starting at 2:00pm, all at the West Center Chapel.

HEAFEY-HOFFMANN DWORAK & CUTLER Mortuaries and Crematories 7805 West Center Road Omaha, Nebraska 68124 (402) 391-3900

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