George Monroe Mercer, 90, passed away January 20, 2016 in Canon City, CO. He was born in 1925 to Charles and Lillian Mercer in Afton, Oklahoma. When he was about ten years old, his parents moved to Grand Junction, Colorado. He attended school through the ninth grade, and then went to live with a brother in Wilmington, California where he was in school during his sophomore and junior years. After the outbreak of WWII he returned to Grand Junction for his senior year and graduated in the spring of 1943.
He was drafted into the Army in 1943 and served with the Army Air Corps for three years. He flew as an Armor/Gunner in B-17’s. He was assigned to the 95th Bomb group of the 8th Air Force stationed in England. After the end of hostilities, he enrolled in Mesa Jr. College for two years and then transferred to Utah State A&M where he graduated with a Bachelors’ of Science. While at Utah State he enrolled in the ROTC program and graduated with a 2nd LT. Commission. He was in the reserves where he was later discharged as a 1st LT.
He started his teaching career at Mesa Jr. College. Then after two years he transferred to public schools. For 30 years at varied intervals, he was a teacher, coach, principal, bus driver, bookkeeper, janitor and counselor. He spent 15 years in the Carbondale area and 15 years in Craig. During his teaching years, he also earned his Master’s Degree in Psychology and Guidance from the University of Northern Colorado.
He was president of several teacher organizations including the Colorado psychology and guidance association. In 1980 he was recognized by the Colorado Wildlife Division for his many years of service as a hunter safety instructor and was given a lifetime subscription to their magazine.
In 1952 while residing in Carbondale, he met and married Annie Marie Rohwer, who has been his constant companion through life. They had many friends in the area and several of those belonged to the Masonic Fraternity. Of course if you made any suggestion about wanting to join, you immediately had a petition shoved into your hands. In 1952, he was raised to the sublime degree of a Master Mason. It wasn’t long until he found himself in the Jr. Stewards Chair, and spent the next seven years moving up. He was W. Master of Carbondale Lodge #82
In 1964, the same year that “Tommy” Thompson was Grand Master. It was also at this time that he served a term on City Council.
He and Annie moved from Carbondale to Craig in 1967. But before that he had gone through the York Rite and had risen to Knight Templar. For the next 15 years he was rather inactive because of the distance that he had to travel to attend meetings.
During the time that he spent in Craig, he became interested in flying and acquired his pilot’s license. He enjoyed many hours in different types of single engine planes before it became too expensive a hobby and he had to give it up.
About 3 years before his retirement in 1982, he and Annie began looking for a place where they might be comfortable the year around. They finally settled on Canon City, Colorado. As it turned out, this was a good move.
It was not long before he affiliated with Mt. Moriah Lodge #15, and within a couple of years he was elected to W. Master. That same year he also joined the Southern Colorado Consistory in Pueblo and became the commander of Kadosh and eventually was appointed the director of degrees.
He belonged to the York Rite and Scottish Rite and is a Past Thrice Illustrious Master, Past High Priest and a Past Commander in the York Rite and a Past Commander of the Southern Colorado Council of Kadosh. He is a Past Grand orator and was appointed as Grand Lecturer. He was also a member of the National Sojourners. George is survived by his wife Annie, of 63 years. He was preceded by his parents and siblings.
At his request there will be no services. Online condolences at harwoodfunerals.com.