Donald W. Archer Sr., 92, passed away on Sunday, Jan. 7, 2018, in Kingsland.
He was born on April 9, 1925, in Groton, Conn. He was preceded in death by his parents, Fred and Anna Archer: his wife, Mary; brothers, John and Charles Archer; sister, Maude Kittridge; and son-in-law, Chester Brister.
Donald lived in Groton until 2010 when he moved to Kingsland. At the age of 17, he joined the U.S. Army and fought in World War II earning a Bronze Star. After the war, he met and married the love of his life, Mary A. Miller, on June 4, 1949. After their marriage, Donald was re-activated and sent to Korea in the Air Force where he earned the rank of master sergeant and earned a second Bronze Star.
At the age of 16, Donald worked on the first Gold Star Bridge, until they found out his real age. He played semi-pro football, helped design and build the first dune buggy, worked on the railroad and was a mechanic and automobile body repairman. He retired from Pfizer in 1986 as a millwright after 33 years of service. He won several trophies for golf and horseshoes. He was an avid fisherman.
He belonged to several clubs, which he was very proud of: Pioneer Hose Co. No. 1, Groton, Conn.; Masonic Order, Blue Lodge, Mystic, Conn.; Shriners; Sphinx; One Dime, Norwich, Conn.; Old Bastards; Turtles; Tuckerbung; past commander of Groton VFW; also belonged to the VFW in Kingsland. He was one of the founding fathers of the Knucklehead Bait and Tackle shop in St. Marys.
He is survived by his six children, Deborah McDonald (Richard) of Greene, N.Y., Donald Archer Jr. (Janice) of The Villages, Fla., Cindy Brister of Kingsland, Joan Chambers of Groton, Conn., Sherry Archer of Fountain, Colo., and Mary Haeseler (Michael) of Mystic, Conn.; his adopted son, Warren Seabury of Groton, Conn.; grandchildren, Scott McDonald, Michael McDonald, David McDonald, Lori Archer, Craig Archer, Samantha James, April Palmon, Kelly DiFraia, Amanda Holland, Anthony Haeseler, Scot Haeseler and Alexander Haeseler; 15 great-grandchildren; his sisters-in-law, Gloria Archer, Gloria Lutzi and Joan Heid; several nieces, nephews, great-nieces and great-nephews; and his best friend, Jim Dickey.
Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Wednesday, Jan. 10, at Allison Memorial Chapel in St. Marys with Pastor Greg Gardell officiating and with military honors. The family will receive friends at the funeral home one hour prior to services.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Shriners Hospital for Children, 2900 Rocky Point Drive, Tampa, FL 33607, (844) 739-0849.
Allison Memorial Chapel and Funeral Home of St. Marys is in charge of arrangements.