On February 12, 2013 at 6:28, Karl E. Karalus went home to the Lord peacefully, surrounded by those he loved. He was born November 19, 1926 to Karl E. Karalus , Sr., and Helen, (Gere) Karalus, who proceeded him in death. He leaves for now his loving wife, Helen Couch Karalus, to whom he was married for 61 wonderful years. And his adoring daughter, Charlene Karalus Ortman, and a son-in-law whom he considered to be as his own son, Donald E. Ortman, a very close friend of the family, Sandio Vennel, and (canine) Wiley who misses his daddy.
Karl Karalus worked as an engineer for the Minneapolis, St. Paul and Sault Ste. Marie Railroad for 23 years. But painting wildlife was what he loved best. In 1971 he resigned from the railroad, moved his family to Florida and began to paint full time. It was then he made his living painting the birds he loved, becoming one of the country’s foremost wildlife artists. He illustrated eight books and co-authored three. He is perhaps best known for, ” The Owls of North America” (Doubleday, 1974 ) and, “The Wading Birds of North America”, (Doubleday, 1981). In June of 1989 Mr. Karalus and his family moved to North Carolina where he completed illustrations for a definitive book, ” Florida’s Birds” authored by Dr. Herb Kale, of the Florida Audubon Society and David S. Maehr, wildlife biologist. “Florida’s Birds” was released by Pineapple Press in January 1990 and is now in it’s 18th printing. Karl most recently illustrated, “Parrots of South Florida”, authored by Susan Allene Epps and published by Pineapple Press in 2007.
Mr. Karalus was an avid fisherman and outdoorsman, and adventurer and was a lifelong collector of exotic butterflies. He loved nature, he loved his family and he loved life. A Celebration Of Life service will be held at Osceola Memory Gardens, 2000 Thirteenth Street, St. Cloud, FL, at 8:30pm on Tuesday, February 19th, 2013. the family will receive friends on Tuesday from 5:00pm-9:00pm at the Funeral Home.
Arrangements are under the artful care of Osceola Memory Gardens, 2000 Thirteenth Street, St. Cloud, FL 34769.