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"Coach Guckert", age 84, McCandless Township, peacefully went on to glory with his family at his side on June 6, 2013, his 60th wedding anniversary. Beloved husband of the late Gloria J. Guckert; loving father of Kathy (Dent) Allison, Karen (David) Morris, Jim Guckert, and Sarah (Philip) Rizzitano; proud grandfather of Laura and Thomas Allison, Thad, Hanna, Ellie and Jennie Morris, Amanda Guckert, Shannon (Eric) Franklin, and Marissa Guckert, Anthony and Nicole Rizzitano; great- grandfather of Gianna and Kylee Roak; cousin of David (Ruth) Palmer; brother-In-law to the late Robert and Maryann Ganter. He was close with his nieces and a nephew, Gary Ganter of Odessa, Texas, Barbara Wagon of Midland, Texas and Debra Ganter of Denver, Colorado. Elmer graduated from Oliver High School in 1947 and lettered in basketball and baseball. He attended The University of Pittsburgh, majoring in teaching and playing baseball as left handed pitcher, later achieving a Masters in teaching in 1957. He played on baseball sandlot teams in Pittsburgh and a farm league for the Pittsburgh Pirates. After graduating, he taught for one year at Shanksville Stoney Creek High School. Drafted on August 6, 1953, he served in Fort Knox, Kentucky for two years. He then taught physical education, driver's education and health at Shanksville and Fifth Avenue High Schools and coached several sports, including basketball, swimming, baseball, and cross country, (three time city champs). His basketball teams at Fifth Avenue were City Champions in 1974, 1975 and 1976 and State Champions in 1976. After Fifth Avenue closed, he taught at Brashear High School, his basketball team winning several City Championships. His basketball coaching record included ten City Championship teams, three Western PA Championships, one State Runner up, and two State Championships. His multiple awards included three time winner of the Western Chapter Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame Coach's Award, four time Post-Gazette Basketball Coach of the year, a P-G Dapper Dan Awardee in 1986, and induction into the Western Pennsylvania Hall of Fame on May 5, 1996. He coached several notable athletes including Sam Clancy, Warner Macklin, Dwight Clay, David Kennedy, Wynorris Banks and Major Harris. He was also a PIAA Official in basketball, baseball and softball. On May 21,1976, Elmer officiated a National League Pirate/Cubs baseball game when umpires refused to cross a food service picket line at Three Rivers Stadium. Elmer was an active member at Christ Episcopal Church and served on the Vestry and as an usher. He was a 50 year member Mason and Shriner. Always busy, Elmer packed and delivered Meals on Wheels in retirement. All who knew him enjoyed his sense of humor. Hot Ziggy Zagnuts, he was the life of the party, enjoyed people, and will be greatly missed. Honor his memory with the family on Friday from 12 p.m. to 9 p.m. at H. P. BRANDT FUNERAL HOME, INC., 1032 Perry Hwy., Pittsburgh, 15237, 412-364-4444. Funeral Service will be held Saturday 9:30 a.m. at Christ Episcopal Church, 5910 Babcock Blvd., Pittsburgh, PA 15237. Everyone please meet at the church. Interment to follow at Allegheny County Memorial Park. In lieu of flowers, donations suggested in his name to the Christ Episcopal Church.

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Published in Pittsburgh Post-Gazette from June 12 to June 14, 2013
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