Eugene R. Lemmerman

Eugene R. Lemmerman, a man who gave the world and his family a legacy of service, faith, and love through example, died on Monday, July 28, 2014, after a brief illness, surrounded by family.  He was 89.   

Mr. Lemmerman was born in Sauk Rapids, Minnesota on July 7, 1925, one of seven sons of Emily (née Glatus) and Peter Lemmerman.  He served in the United States Navy during World War II as an electronic technician’s mate, second class.

Following his service, he graduated from the University of Minnesota with a bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering.  In October 1950, he married Pauline Williams from Newbury, Vermont.

He was inspired to serve and witness after attending a missionary’s workshop.  With the encouragement of his pastor, he left his work at General Electric in Schenectady to attend the Lutheran Seminary in Chicago, Illinois. In 1963, with his family, he departed for Liberia, West Africa.

“He began his journey of faith and service to others, utilizing his engineering knowledge to make a greater positive impact in Africa,” his family wrote in a tribute.  He and his family returned to the United States in 1972.

His family quoted this Liberian proverb — “To the patient man will come all the riches of the world” — and wrote, “Gene’s riches were measured in his heart and soul by the lives he touched and the knowledge he imparted to others.”

During his service in Africa, Mr. Lemmerman taught skills, strategies, and basic academics; he modeled his faith; and he encouraged his students to broaden their horizons through gardening and farming, mechanics, building radio communications, and sportsmanship, his family wrote, adding, “His knowledge, dedication, and commitment earned him the affectionate title of ‘Iron Man’ from his students.”

Mr. Lemmerman returned to work for GE and retired in 1986 from the Ordnance Division in Pittsfield, Massachusetts.  He permanently settled in Knox, where he built a home with his own hands and the help of his family. He continued to serve through many projects, including the Maritime Ministry at the Port of Albany, and the St. John’s Community Men’s Breakfast that supported many charities.  He also continued to financially support many students in Liberia to advance their education even during civil war, just to name a few of his contributions.

Eugene R. Lemmerman is survived by his younger brother, Ellard Lemmerman of Rice, Minnesota; his wife, Pauline; his children, Linda Garbellano of Glenville, New York; Steven Lemmerman and wife, Mary Anne, of Ghent, New York; Gregory Lemmerman of Knox; James Lemmerman and his fiancée, Maria ,of Rome, New York, and Deborah Romano and her husband, Joseph, of East Longmeadow, Massachusetts.  He is also survived by several grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and great-great-grandchildren.

His parents died before him, as did his brothers, Harold, Earl, Donald, Robert, and Duane Lemmerman.

A memorial service will be held on Sunday, Aug. 10, at St. John’s Lutheran Church, 140 Maple Avenue in Altamont at 2 p.m. with a reception to follow in the Fellowship Hall.

A burial service has been planned for 11 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 11, at Gerald B. H. Solomon Saratoga National Cemetery, 200 Duell Road in Schuylerville.

Arrangements are by the Fredendall Funeral Home in Altamont, and mourners may leave messages online at fredendallfuneralhome.com.

Memorial contributions may be made to the “St. John’s Building Fund” of St. John’s Lutheran Church, 140 Maple Ave., Altamont, NY 12009 or to a charity or choice.

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