SAWYER, JOHN PORTER, 93,of Louisville a retired businessman and civic leader, died peacefully Tuesday July 1, 2014 at the Episcopal Church Home, Louisville.
He was born on October 7, 1920 to Albert and Agnes Porter Sawyer, and grew up in Louisville.
John Porter graduated from Louisville Male High School in 1938, and the University of Illinois in 1942. He entered the US Army after graduation and served as an Armored Reconnaissance Unit Commander with the 14th. Armored Division ("The Liberators") in France and Germany. He was wounded twice and received two Purple Hearts and the Bronze Star for bravery. He retired at the rank of captain at the end of World War II, and returned to Louisville.
He had a long career as the past owner and chairman of the Erdmann Corporation, an industrial supply company that serves Southern Indiana and Kentucky. He was the president of the Louisville Area Chamber of Commerce, director of the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce, served on the Ad-Hoc Labor Management Committee, was chairman of the Small Business Council of the US Chamber of Commerce, was a delegate to the White House conference on Small Business, was chairman of the Louisville and Jefferson County Planning Commission, director of the Industrial Development Agency, chairman of the Land Use Control and Permitting Process, Member of the Kentucky Water Pollution Control Board and the Louisville Republican Mayoral Nominee in 1969, and a founding member of the Patton Museum.
He was a past member of the Louisville Country Club where he greatly enjoyed playing golf with his wife, family and good friends for many years. He attended Christ United Methodist Church.
John Porter was preceded in death by his wife of 64 years, Mary Jane Geyer Sawyer, born in Sterling, Illinois.
He is survived by his three sons John Porter Sawyer Jr. (Susan Sawyer) of Boston MA, Chris Geyer Sawyer (Sylvia Sawyer) of Palm Bay, FL., William Edward Sawyer (Michele Hulsey) of Louisville; six grandchildren, five great grandchildren and his brother, Thomas W. Sawyer of Louisville.
A private family ceremony will be held to celebrate his life. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial donations be made to the Episcopal Church Home, 7504 Westport Rd., Louisville KY. 40222, as an expression of his sincere gratitude to their staff and management for their wonderful care and dedication to making the last year of his life a blessing and a gift of the time, allowing the family to spend many peaceful hours reminiscing with him about life. We thank God for the gift of his life and the legacy he left with us.
Pearson Funeral Home
149 Breckenridge Lane Louisville, KY 40207
Published in The Courier-Journal on July 6, 2014