James K. Elmer
Formerly of Ayer, WWll Vet; 93
GARDNER -- James K. Elmer, 93, formerly of Ayer, died Wednesday, March 26, 2014, at St. Vincent Hospital, Worcester, after a period of declining health.
He was the husband of 65 years to Victoria C. (Kolakowski) Elmer, who died on July 18, 2013.
He was born in Ayer, the son of the late James F. and Katherine J. (Toohey) Elmer. Educated in the Ayer School system, he was a 1938 graduate of Ayer High School where he served as the marching band drum major throughout all four years. Following graduation, he worked as a supervisor for the U.S. Army
Post Exchange Service at the former Ft. Devens before enlisting in the Army in 1942. He was trained as a Rifle Sharpshooter and Expert Gunner while serving in the Rhineland, Ardennes, and Central Europe Campaigns during World War II
. After achieving the rank of Corporal, he fought in the 446th Antiaircraft Artillery Automatic Weapons Battalion during the Battle of The Bulge in 1944. He received the American Theater Campaign Ribbon, Victory Medal, Good Conduct Medal, and European African Middle Eastern Theater Campaign Ribbon upon completing his military service on Dec. 13, 1945.
Mr. Elmer returned to Ayer where he remained for the next 46 years. He worked at the former Chandler Machine Co. in Ayer until 1954 when he became a Civilian Federal Employee with the Military Intelligence Division of the Army Security Agency at the former Ft. Devens. He remained in this position for 25 years until his retirement in 1979. In 1991, he and his wife relocated to Heritage Village Retirement Community in Gardner where he founded and became director of the Heritage Village Crime Watch program. He received the MA State Senate Citation in 1998 and the MA House of Representatives Recognition Award in 2003 for his efforts. He was a long time member of St. Mary's Church in Ayer and a recent communicant of the Holy Spirit Parish in Gardner.
He is survived by three sons: Kenneth Elmer of Northampton, Richard Elmer of Pepperell, and Timothy Elmer of Shirley; five grandchildren, Sarah (Elmer) Anderson of Royalston, Christopher Elmer of Shirley, Geoffrey Elmer of Nashua, NH, Shawn Elmer of Pepperell, and Allison Elmer of Gardner; two great-grandchildren, Maison Stevens and Ralle Anderson, both of Royalston; and three generations of nieces and nephews, including Kathryn (Sienkiewicz) Davis of Merrimack, NH, and Martin Sienkiewicz of Ashby.
He was also the brother of the late M. Eileen (Elmer) Sienkiewicz of Westford, who died in 2003.
ELMER -- It being Mr. Elmer's request, there will be no calling hours. A graveside service with Military Honors will be held on Saturday, April 12th, 10:45 a.m. at St. Mary's Cemetery, Bishop Road, Ayer, MA. All are invited to attend. For those who wish, memorial contributions may be made to the Heritage Village Association, 55 Sunrise Lane, Gardner, MA 01440. The T. J. Anderson & Son Funeral Home, 25 Fitchburg Road is assisting the family with arrangements. For additional information, please see www.andersonfuneral.com