Karl Brunell

October 7, 1922April 12, 2019

Karl Brunell, engineer & early computing pioneer and devoted husband, father, grandfather, & great-grandfather, passed peacefully in his sleep on Friday, April 12, 2019, five days after his beloved wife Lillian. He was 96.

Karl was born in Cologne, Germany on October 7, 1922. His family owned a barbershop supply business there. In 1939, when Karl was just 17, he was forced to flee Germany as a refugee from the Nazis. He came to the United States alone, and would not be joined by his parents and younger sister for several years. In America, he worked as a machinist and went to school at night to earn a GED. He was drafted into the United States Army in 1943 and rose from an enlisted soldier to a second Lieutenant during the Second World War. He was awarded multiple Purple Hearts for combat injuries and the Bronze Star for bravery.

After his discharge from the Army, he met Lillian. They married in 1947 and raised two daughters. While supporting his family, he earned an engineering degree at City College. He worked at Bell and Howell Labs, the American Company, and John Dusenbury Company. He held several engineering patents, including one obtained in 1967 for a "teaching machine" that was an early computer used for educational purposes. He was recognized in the encyclopedia of the American Men of Science and his work was published in the Journal of Engineering for Industry.

Karl is survived by his sister Adele Obodov, his daughters Merrilea Brunell & Hilary Monaco, his sons-in-law, Jeff Brutman & Larry Monaco, his grandchildren Matthew Monaco & wife Kaitlyn Monaco, David Brunell-Brutman, Michael Monaco, Rachel Brunell-Brutman, and great-grandchildren Max, Murphy, & Miley Monaco. He will be missed by his family and friends.

A funeral service will be held 1:00 pm on Sunday, at Bernheim Apter Kreitzman Suburban Funeral Chapel, 68 Old Short Hills Rd., Livingston. Burial will follow at Hilltop Cemetery, Mendham.



  • Funeral Service Sunday, April 14, 2019
  • Burial Sunday, April 14, 2019


  • Memorial Donations, Shiva

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