Donald Sorgenfrei Obituary

Service Information

 
In Memory of

Donald F. Sorgenfrei

April 15, 1940 - November 9, 2016
Obituary

Donald F. Sorgenfrei passed away peacefully after a brief illness on November 9, 2016 surrounded by his wife and children. He was born in Opelousas, Louisiana and resided in the New Orleans area for most of his life. A graduate of Warren Easton High School in 1958, he went on to earn a Bachelor’s Degree in Civil Engineering from LSU in 1964. Upon graduating from LSU, Don served his country in the U.S. Army. Don followed his Father’s footsteps and began his career with Modjeski and Masters, Inc. as a Civil Engineer in 1966. He was Principal and Senior Vice President of Modjeski and Masters and in charge of the New Orleans...

Donald F. Sorgenfrei passed away peacefully after a brief illness on November 9, 2016 surrounded by his wife and children. He was born in Opelousas, Louisiana and resided in the New Orleans area for most of his life. A graduate of Warren Easton High School in 1958, he went on to earn a Bachelor’s Degree in Civil Engineering from LSU in 1964. Upon graduating from LSU, Don served his country in the U.S. Army. Don followed his Father’s footsteps and began his career with Modjeski and Masters, Inc. as a Civil Engineer in 1966. He was Principal and Senior Vice President of Modjeski and Masters and in charge of the New Orleans Office before his retirement. During his tenure, Don was responsible for forming many of the strong ties that bind Modjeski & Masters Inc. to the railroad community. His vast knowledge and technical expertise in all phases of bridge engineering were the hallmark of his long and distinguished career highlighted by: Serving as Field Engineer, Resident Engineer, Project Manager and Principal in Charge for the construction of 10 railroad vertical lift bridges; Serving as Principal in Charge for the inspections of the Crescent City Connection I and II Bridges and the Huey P. Long Bridge over the course of much of his career; Was instrumental in the establishment and oversight of the firm’s Mid-America offices; Performed system-wide steel bridge inspections including actively inspecting over 500 bridges in 13 states, followed by the development and implementation of the 1st generation bridge inspection database; Taught steel bridge and movable bridge inspection classes to 3 Class 1 railroads plus American Bridge and Building Association and the American Railway Engineering and Maintenance Way Association.





Don was a nationally recognized and respected bridge expert, whose experience was sought out by many agencies and companies. He was a Fellow and Life Member of the American Society of Civil Engineering, a Member of the Committee 8 (Concrete Structures and Foundations) and 10 (Structures, Maintenance and Construction) of the American Railway Engineering and Maintenance Way Association and served on their Board of Directors as well as Vice President of the Structures Group. He was also a Member of Society of American Military Engineers and the Steel Structures Painting Council.





Don mentored innumerable young engineers, freely sharing his knowledge to aid them in their professional growth.



Don’s greatest accomplishment was his dedication to his family. He is survived by his beloved wife of 55 years Julie B. Sorgenfrei, his children Ruth Sorgenfrei, Bill Sorgenfrei and Karen Champagne (Ty). Also survived by his grandchildren Cory (Laura), Eric, Peyton, Nicole and Katie, as well as his great granddaughter, Reese. Don is also survived by his sister Mary Alice Helms (Dave) of Chicago, as well as host of loving nieces and nephews.



The family would like to thank the Staff and Nurses of West Jefferson Medical Center for their loving care of Don.



Relatives and friends are invited to attend a funeral service on Monday, November 14, 2016 at 1:00 p.m. at Lake Lawn Metairie Funeral Home, 5100 Pontchartrain Blvd, New Orleans, LA 70124. Visitation will be held prior to the service beginning at 11:00 a.m. In lieu of flowers, please make donations to Atonement Lutheran Church, 6500 Riverside Drive, Metairie, LA 70003.



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"My deepest sympathy to the Sorgenfrei family and the Modjeski and Masters family. I counted on Don's tremendous knowledge, experience and insight during..." Robert Kollmar (Washington, DC)

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New Orleans Advocate, The
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Donald F. Sorgenfrei passed away peacefully after a brief illness on November 9, 2016 surrounded by his wife and children. He was born in...

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