Draut, Arthur Kammerer,
91, of Louisville, died on December 14, 2015.
Military officer, educator and politician, he had a long and distinguished career in public service. He was born in 1924 as a fourth generation Louisvillian to Walter and Louise (Kammerer) Draut. Art, as a teenager attending DuPont Manual High School, developed a great sense of humor and a memorable laugh. Upon graduation in 1942, he joined the U.S. Navy and served as a radioman aboard the USS Wright that supported military campaigns in the South Pacific during World War II. In 1946, he returned on a merchant tanker via the Panama Canal. His train from New Orleans was met by his family and high school girlfriend, Patricia Epperson, who waited four years for his return. Art and Pat were married in 1949.
One year after marriage, Art was recalled by the U.S. Navy for a three year tour of duty in the Korean War. Posted back to the South Pacific, he was soon promoted to Ensign and went to officer training in Bayonne, New Jersey. He retired from the Naval Reserves in 1968 as a full Commander with 26 years of service to our country.
After he earned his Bachelor's Degree from the University of Louisville, his civilian career began as a teacher at Eastern High School. In 1956, he transferred to the newly opened Waggener High School where he was a teacher, a dean of students, assistant principal and became principal of Waggener in 1968 until his retirement in 1984. Waggener, under his leadership and supported by a superior teaching staff, earned national academic recognition. Students knew him as a firm and fair leader who had great interest in their success.
Art's political career began in 1978 with election to the St. Matthews City Council. In 1984 he was appointed Mayor upon the death of St. Matthews' beloved mayor, Bernard Bowling. Art would remain mayor for 24 years but continued as a councilman for six additional years and retired in 2014 at the age of 90. During his tenure he and excellent city councils created two St. Matthews parks, installed street lights and sidewalks throughout the city, launched a tree planting program, and upgraded the St. Matthews Community Center.
He was a loving and dedicated husband to Pat, and a loving father to Andy, Ken and Doug. Two passions were going to Lake Cumberland where fun and laughter became lifetime family memories and taking annual family trips to see Spring Baseball in Florida. Later in life, he joyfully took on the role as a wonderful and fun loving grandfather. Art's sense of humor, his great laugh, and sincere interest in other people were his lifetime hallmarks.
Throughout his life he was the member of numerous organizations including: Beargrass Christian Church, Masonic Abraham Lodge 8, American Legion, Kentucky Derby Festival, the Naval Memorial, Military Officers Association and the DuPont Manual Hall of Fame.
Surviving are his three sons, Andrew Draut and his wife Lynda, Ken Draut and his wife Melissa, Doug Draut and his wife Maureen; four grandchildren, Travers Kammerer Draut, Samuel Conrad Draut, Alexis Nicole Draut, and Hannah Patricia Draut; nephew, Walter Draut, Jr.; niece, Sharon Bailey; sister-in-law, Jean McGill, and nephews, David, Steve and Michael McGill. He was preceded in death by his wife of 42 years, Patricia Epperson Draut; his mother, Louise Kammerer Draut Lehnhardt; his father, Walter August Draut; his stepfather, Roy H. Lehnhardt; his brother, Walter Draut; sister, Lillian Draut Kline and stepbrother, Robert Lehnhardt.
His funeral will be at 11 a.m. Saturday, December 19, 2015 at Highlands Funeral Home, 3331 Taylorsville Road. Visitation will be from 4-7 p.m. Friday at Highlands.
The family extends grateful and heartfelt thanks and appreciation to the loving staff at Westport Place.
In lieu of flowers please send donations to: Beargrass Christian Church, 4100 Shelbyville Road, 40207 or an organization of the donor's choice.
Published by Courier-Journal from Dec. 16 to Dec. 18, 2015.