Elmer E. Kopp 90, vet, farmer, hero earned Distinguished Service Cross, Purple Heart for his service

By on February 12, 2014

Elmer E. Kopp

Elmer E. Kopp

Elmer E. Kopp, 90, of Reinholds entered into rest Sunday, Feb. 9, 2014 at his home.

Born in Schoeneck Oct. 2, 1923, he was the son of the late Robert Petticoffer Kopp and Minnie Gress Schannauer Kopp. He was the husband of Katherine W. Gelsinger Kopp with whom he celebrated 63 years of marriage June 24, 2013.

Elmer entered the United States Army in February 1943. He served with Company F of the 143rd Regiment, 36th Texas Infantry Division. After his initial training stateside, he traveled to and trained in North Africa. He fought three campaigns in the European Theatre. For his heroic action in France, he was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, the nation’s second highest medal. In addition to the Distinguished Service Cross, Elmer was also awarded the Purple Heart and the Combat Infantryman’s Badge.

In September 1947, Elmer earned his private pilot’s license and in 1948, he worked in a gold mine in Goldstream, Alaska. After returning from Alaska, Elmer took up farming. In the 1980s, Elmer grew Atlantic Giant pumpkins. The largest pumpkin he grew weighed 724 lbs. It was pumpkins like these which he supplied to the White House. In addition to farming, Elmer also worked as a mason for Harvey Snyder Masonry.

Elmer E. Kopp

Elmer E. Kopp

Besides farming, Elmer enjoyed hunting, fishing and traveling. He was a member of Swamp Evangelical Lutheran Church, Reinholds for 77 years, and a charter lifetime member of the Reinholds V.F.W. Post #6759.

Surviving in addition to his wife are his three children: Janet L. Knabb of Reinholds; Linda L., wife of Theodore Sauer of Reinholds and Lisa M., wife of Michael DeMarco of Cumming, Georgia; four grandchildren: Jennifer H., wife of Eric Kepple of Denver; Elizabeth M., wife of Jesse Zimmerman of Stevens; Michael and Sophia DeMarco of Cumming, Georgia and three great-grandsons: Hunter and Chase Kepple of Denver and Theo Elmer Zimmerman of Stevens. Elmer is also survived by two brothers: Robert Kopp, Jr. of Reinholds and Daniel Kopp of Stevens and two sisters: Joyce Bollinger of East Earl and Linda Beard of Denver.

Elmer was preceded in death by three sisters: Anna Mary Kopp (infant), Helen Fasnacht and Ella Griffe.

A viewing will be held Feb. 13 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Roseboro Stradling Funeral & Cremation Services, Inc., 533 Walnut Street, Denver, and also from 10 to 11 a.m., Friday at the Swamp Evangelical Lutheran Church, 275 Swamp Church Road, Reinholds. Funeral services will follow at 11:00 a.m., with Pastor Dennis L. Trout officiating. Interment will follow in the Swamp Cemetery, where military honors will be accorded.

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