Louis O. Werneke, the founder of Werneke Ink, passed away on March 31, 2013.
Born in 1926, he was nicknamed “Inky Lou” and began the design of the first water-based ink for flexographic printing in 1973.
He then moved onto developing a water-based system for label printing, and built a successful global business that became part of Flint Group via a number of mergers and acquisitions after Akzo Nobel acquired the company in 1998.
Flint said Werneke Ink remains a key facet of the company today.
Louis (pictured, top) was married to June, who passed away in 2008, and is survived by his two children, Matthew Werneke and Lisa Werneke Nelson. He had eight grandchildren.
Visitation and prayer mass will be held on April 8 at Washburn-McReavy in Edina, Minnesota. In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to the N.C. Little Hospice Edina, Minnesota, 7019 Lynmar Lane, Edina, Minnesota, 55435.
In a statement, Flint said: ‘Our thoughts and sympathy go out to the Werneke family and friends during this sad time. We have all lost a well-respected friend, colleague and an industry icon.’
Mike Fairley, international publishing director of Labels & Labeling, said: ‘Lou was a real enthusiast about label inks and did much through his innovation and development to help the label industry grow over the years, especially for his work in raising the quality and standards of the flexographic printing process. Active in the industry and a regular participant at association events and Labelexpo shows, he was recognized and known affectionately by label converters and other industry suppliers alike.
‘Lou and I often shared a golf cart during TLMI meetings. Neither of us played that well, but he was always good company, excited to discuss the latest label trends and developments, and fun to be with. The world of labels owes much to him and he will undoubtedly be remembered by the industry for a long time to come.’