Arnold Grummer

Obituary
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Grummer, Arnold E.

Arnold E. Grummer died on Oct. 24 at Cherry Meadows Hospice of lung cancer. He and his entire family had just celebrated his induction into the Paper Industry Hall of Fame on Oct. 11th.

He was born Aug. 19, 1923 to the Rev. E.H. and Anna Grummer in Spencer, IA. He was educated in the Lutheran parochial school started by his father in Latimer, IA where he also graduated from Latimer High School in 1941. He then spent four years serving his country in the U.S, Coast Guard achieving the rank of Radioman 2/c in WWII. As a benefit of the GI Bill he attained a BA in English from Iowa State Teachers College, (U of Northern Iowa) and an MA in Writing from the State University of Iowa. He spent two years in public radio at ISTC, was in Special Promotions at Armstrong Cork Company in Lancaster,Pa., taught high school English in Osage, IA, and moved to Appleton, WI to work for then AAL in advertising. In1961 he joined the Institute of Paper Chemistry in Appleton as Editor of Publications.

Arnold gained his knowledge and excitement for the science of paper making from the staff and especially the scientists at the Institute. They generously shared their scientific knowledge with him as he wrote for many publications about their amazing experiments and achievements. As Arnold spent more and more time doing tours and publicizing the Institute, he asked then President John Strange, whom he greatly admired, to authorize funds for building a transparent model of the standard British hand sheet former. This was a tool from the labs for testing paper sheets and was standard world wide. Arnold saw this tool as a way to better explain the miracle (to him) of the bonding of the cellulose fiber. Funds were awarded and the tours were marvelous. Later, when management changed and emphasis on the move to Atlanta became the focus of the Institute, the machine was awarded to Arnold. He immediately named it The Great American Paper Machine (Arnie liked the word 'great') and with encouragement from Mabe, he bought an orange-red van, had it painted with stars and stripes, and then took his demo, workshops, electron micrographs, and acquired knowledge of paper science and papermaking history on the road. He traveled from coast to coast and in Canada. His passion for hand papermaking spawned a small business, Greg Markim, Inc, or later Arnold Grummer's, as every where he went he inspired people to want to make paper, too. He had numerous opportunities to appear on TV and his demos are on youtube.

In addition to duties as General Editor, he was later appointed Curator of the Dard Hunter Paper Museum, housed at the Institute. Here he facilitated research and networking among founders of the hand papermaking movement in America which grew into The Friends of Dard Hunter, an association of paper, book and letter arts. The Friends awarded Arnold their Lifetime Achievement Award in part 'for sharing your infectious joy of the craft with us all.'

His faith/life journey was grounded not only in the Biblical teaching of his parents, the Rev. E.H. and Anna Grummer, but in their constant steady example. He especially depended on their prayers during his years in the Coast Guard during WWII as he traveled on a Coast Guard cutter to Australia and back. He was a chairman of Faith Lutheran congregation, he led a Bible class (Roaming Through Romans), and was involved for many years in the radio outreach ministry.

He was a devoted husband to his wife of 64 years, Mabe, and a loving father to his children Mark (Ellen Mahan), Greg (Janet Malmon), and Kim (Dave) Schiedermayer who were the joy and focus of his life. He is survived by sisters Erna Schmidt and Sylvia Grummer of Denver, IA and brother Harold of Santa Rosa, CA. He is also survived by grandchildren Jon (Becky Gelinas), Fall River, MA; Dan (sweetheart Clare Vander Woude) Madison, WI; Ellie ( sweetheart Sam McColley), Bozeman, MT; Eddie Grummer and Billy Grummer, Washington, DC, and Jack Grummer, Milwaukee, WI. He was preceded in death by his beloved son, Mark Grummer (2008), his parents, by brothers Louis, Arthur, Leonard, and Norman, and sisters Olga Kolb and Norma Jean and a nephew Larry Grummer.

He was lovingly cared for during the final days of his life by his family and Theda Care At Home, Dr. Swanson and the staff at Cherry Meadows Hospice. Arnie had a long life in part due to the excellent medical care he received at Appleton Medical Center. Our own Dr. Dave was there for Arnie over and over. We as a family especially want to thank Appleton Cardiology, Dr.Zhou, Dr. Harding and Dr. Abouzelam and ancillary nursing staff at AMC.

A service of celebration will be held at Faith Lutheran Church in Appleton, WI on Monday at 11 am. Visiting with family and friends at 9:30 - 11 at the church, luncheon to follow in the church fellowship hall.

In lieu of flowers, Arnold's favorite organizations are Leaven, the Paper Discovery Center and the Radio Ministry of Faith Lutheran Church.

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Published in Appleton Post-Crescent on Oct. 27, 2012
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