Louis Karras

September 19, 1927September 20, 2018

Louis George Karras was born in Gary, Indiana on Sept. 19, 1927 to George Karras, a physician and Emeline Wilson, a registered nurse.

He attended Emerson HS and was soon recognized as a rising football star. He was heavily recruited and he selected Purdue University to pursue his dream. He joined the Theta Chi fraternity and soon found a place he considered home. He was voted “MVP” in 1949 and went on to be the first Karras in the NFL. He played left tackle for the Washington Redskins before a career ending injury forced him down another path. He soon became a business owner and eventually "Karras Tire" expanded to three stores in NW Indiana.

Lou was also active in the political arena holding the position of Councilman at Large and Democratic City Chairman of Gary, Indiana. He went on to take leadership roles serving as the President of the National Tire Dealers of America and the All American Sertoma in Clearwater, Fl. Lou retired and moved to Florida in 1990 where he focused time on his other favorite hobbies, going to the YMCA and the horse track.

Lou leaves to cherish his memory 3 daughters: Deborah (Greg) Sokol, Pamela (Bruce) Meythaler, Christine (Brian) Tillinghast. 3 step sons: Bruce (deceased) (Sheri) Wackowski, Wayne (Vivian) Wackowski and Larry (Laura) Wackowski.

His greatest love was his grandchildren. Brandon Wackowski, Nick, Louis and Lauren Sokol, Katherine (Justin) Carnes, Haydyn Meythaler and Reed, Ella and Cade Tillinghast. He is preceded in death by his 1st wife Marilyn Kazic and his wife of nearly 50 years Dorothy Puinti.

Lou celebrated his 91st birthday surrounded by people who love him and then peacefully transitioned in his sleep.

A service to celebrate his life is planned for early November in Clearwater, Fl.

In lieu of flowers please make donations to Surfers for Autism (Cade Tillinghast); 7491 N. Federal Hwy, C5-180, Boca Raton, Fl. 33487 or Purdue University (


  • Christine (Brian) Tillinghast, Daughter
  • Deborah (Greg) Sokol, Daughter
  • Pamela (Bruce) Meythaler, Daughter
  • Larry Laura) Wackowski, Son
  • Wayne (Vivian) Wackowski, Son
  • Bruce (Sheri) Wackowski, Son

  • Surfers for Autism (Cade Tillinghast)
  • Purdue University (


  • Memorial Service Saturday, November 10, 2018

Louis Karras

have a memory or condolence to add?

Laura A

September 28, 2018

Mr. Karra was so blessed to have had such a big and loving family. I hope that the God of all comfort is with you all during this difficult time. Thank you so much for sharing these little snippets of his lifetime...his great adventure.

Ted Karras Jr

September 27, 2018

RIP Uncle Lou....The Patriarch of the football playing Karras family - took on the tough role when Grandpa George passed away too soon....great business man and always appreciated my time working at Karras Tire and listening to the wisdom of Uncle Lou - you will be missed - Ted Jr