Elmer Dietrich Friedrich Dettmer (1919 - 2010)



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Elmer Dietrich Friedrich Dettmer Biography & Family History

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Avoca, Cass County, NE


at First Lutheran (North Branch) Church,
Avoca, Cass County, NE


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Last Known Residence

Syracuse, Otoe County, NE

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Father: William "Bill" Dettmer
Mother: Hattie (Kirchoff) Dettmer
Siblings: Harvey Henry John Dettmer, Vernon Richard Dettmer, and Arthur Dettmer

Wife: Norma Jean (Roos) Dettmer
Children with Norma: Dee Ann (Dettmer) Young


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Was a farmer and was in the construction business for 26 years.


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1919 - In the year that Elmer Dietrich Friedrich Dettmer was born, in Norfolk Virginia, the first rotary dial telephones were introduced by the American Telephone and Telegraph Company (AT&T), making it easier to make a call without an operator.

1939 - At the age of 20 years old, Elmer Dietrich was alive when on the 1st of September, Nazi Germany invaded Poland. On September 17th, the Soviet Union invaded Poland as well. Poland expected help from France and the United Kingdom, since they had a pact with both. But no help came. By October 6th, the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany held full control of the previously Polish lands. Eventually, the invasion of Poland lead to World War II.

1966 - He was 47 years old when on September 8th, the first Star Trek episode, "The Man Trap," was broadcast on NBC. The plot concerned a creature that sucked salt from human bodies. The original series only aired for 3 seasons due to low ratings.

1971 - At the age of 52 years old, Elmer Dietrich was alive when on May 3rd, 10,000 federal troops, 5,100 officers of the D.C. Metropolitan Police, 2,000 members of the D.C. National Guard, and federal agents assembled in Washington DC to prevent an estimated 10,000 Vietnam War protesters from marching. President Nixon (who was in California) refused to give federal employees the day off and they had to navigate the police and protesters, adding to the confusion. By the end of a few days of protest, 12,614 people had been arrested - making it the largest mass arrest in US history.

1975 - At the age of 56 years old, Elmer Dietrich was alive when in January, Popular Mechanics featured the Altair 8800 on it's cover. The Altair home computer kit allowed consumers to build and program their own personal computers. Thousands were sold in the first month.

Elmer Dietrich Friedrich Dettmer Family Tree

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edit Elmer Dietrich Friedrich Dettmer & Norma Jean (Roos) Dettmer
Elmer Dietrich Friedrich Dettmer
Elmer Dietrich Friedrich Dettmer & Norma Jean (Roos) Dettmer

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This obit of Elmer Dietrich Friedrich Dettmer is updated by the community. Edit this biography to contribute to his obituary. Include details such as cemetery, burial, newspaper obituary and grave or marker inscription if available.

He was the eldest son of William and Hattie (Kirchhoff) Dettmer. He was baptized on June 8, 1919, at First Lutheran (North Branch) Church by Rev. Carl Luecke. He was confirmed on May 7, 1933, at the same church by Rev. Bergstraesser. Elmer was united in marriage to Norma Jean Roos on October 12, 1944. To this union one daughter, Dee Ann, was born on December 16, 1958. Elmer and Norma Jean celebrated 60 years together. Norma Jean joined her Lord on January 14, 2005. The first year of their married life, Elmer and Norma Jean farmed 41/2 miles north of Syracuse. Moving into Syracuse in 1946, Elmer then was in the construction business for 26 years. He had a serious accident and after over a year of recuperation, he became maintenance man at the Good Samaritan Center in Syracuse until his retirement in 1982. Elmer was a people person and enjoyed making new friends and visiting. He didn't know a stranger. A member of Luther Memorial Church, he was active in church and community work. For many years he assisted in teaching Sunday School, sponsoring Jr. Lutherans, helped with Girl Scouts, and various school activities. For 25 years he served as the town Santa Claus. His homemade outdoor Christmas scene was an attraction to the community for many years. He enjoyed his years working at the nursing home, brightening the day for the residents and bringing them some happiness. In 1980, he was named as the first recipient of the Jaycee outstanding community service award. Elmer was an avid traveler, covering all 50 states while camping and later on bus tours. He always looked forward to meeting new people on these travels. After retirement he became an active volunteer at the Otoe County Museum of Memories and also a member of the Community Improvement Program. He was a former member of the Syracuse Lions Club, served 15 years on the Syracuse Volunteer Fire Department, and a short time on the Syracuse Rescue Squad. In 1989 Elmer and Norma Jean were named as the recipients of the Community Service Award. He was a member of the Syracuse Fitness Center. Elmer and Norma Jean were King and Queen of Germanfest in 1990. He was an auxiliary member of the Frank Woods Telephone Pioneers. When health limited more activities, he enjoyed sitting in his outdoor swing watching the traffic on Highway 50, looking at the countryside, and helping with household chores. Since mid 2005, he enjoyed his residency at the Good Samaritan Center in Syracuse. He found great joy in singing, playing the bells, attending church services, listening to music, and visiting with family and friends. His relationship deepened greatly with his daughter, Dee; son-in-law, Wayne; and grandson, Barrett. Surviving are his daughter, Dee (Ann) and Wayne Young and grandson Barrett Young, all of Paola, Kansas; adopted family, the Jerry and Shirley Siefken families of Syracuse, Lincoln, and Omaha, Nebraska; brothers and sisters-in-law, Harvey and Myldred Dettmer, Donna Belle Dettmer, of Syracuse, and Vernon Dettmer, Avoca. He is preceded in death by a brother, Arthur; his wife, Norma Jean; and his parents.


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