Michael Paul Krebs (1956-2023)
Michael Paul Krebs of Chicago IL (formerly of Freeport IL) passed away Sunday, January 29, 2023 in his home. Michael was a Freeport High School and, Western Illinois University alum, and theater graduate.
Michael was best known for playing Abraham Lincoln, and portrayed that character at various occasions throughout the US since 1994. Most recently appearing in “Timeless: The Assassination of Abraham Lincoln” (2016) and “Field of Lost Shoes” (2015). As producer of With Lincoln Productions, an artist ensemble, Krebs appeared in President Lincoln's Second Inaugural Address 150th Anniversary (TV, 2015) and President Lincoln's Inauguration Re-enactment (2011) in Washington DC. Krebs has performed for the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum, the Hoover Presidential Library, Gerald Ford Museum, Gettysburg, New Salem Historic Site, and hundred s of educational programs at schools throughout the US. Working at the Chicago Historical Society from 1996-2005, Krebs appeared weekly in the Voices From History Program, portraying President Lincoln in the highly successful exhibits "The Last Best Hope of Earth: Abraham Lincoln and the Promise of America" and "The American Presidency: A Glorious Burden," also with their Distance Learning Center in opening Wet with Blood, an examination of Lincoln's assassination archives. He participated with the Library of Congress on Mr. Lincoln's Virtual Library. As a guest speaker at Carl Sandburg College, he was part of President Clinton's address in January of 1995. He portrayed candidate Lincoln in the 1994 CSpan live broadcast re-enactment of the Lincoln-Douglas Galesburg Debate (1994) held at Knox College and appearing as Lincoln in "Conspiracy?" (TV, 2004). Also in Hatchett Books Group's “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter”. Like Mr. Lincoln, Michael stood 6'4" without his boots.
Michael portrayed the 16th president on WGN Morning News numerous times, for nearly 20 years. On President’s Day following his death, the WGN news staff paid tribute to him with this selection of his many appearances: https://wgntv.com/morning-news/a-wgn-morning-news-tribute-to-actor-michael-krebs/
Michael was preceded in death by his father, Rudolph Krebs, and is survived by his mother Ruth Krebs sister Toni (Dan) Leiby; nephews Chris (Rikki) Perrin and Rob (Kate) Leiby; his “Chicago Family”, Jim Clark and Deb Miller; and special friends Sarah Theising and Jean Feit.
Michael lives on in our memories particularly in the memories of those who loved him most.