Elmer Henry "Bear" Ward, 83, passed away Tuesday evening, March 26, 1996, at the McKay Dee Hospital in Ogden, after a seven year valiant battle with cancer.
He was born October 13, 1912 to Orville Henry and Celia Ann Woodland Ward. Elmer was reared and educated in Willard, a graduate of Box Elder High School and Utah State University. He married Floetta "Tedda" Nelson on April 10, 1935 in Farmington. Their marriage was solemnized in the Logan Temple March 12, 1946. Tedda died October 12, 1963. On January 20, 1967, Elmer married Venette H. Warnock in Las Vegas.Elmer distinguished himself in athletics, and in civil service and a military career. As a football player, Mr. Ward became Utah State University's first All-American in 1934 and was affectionately called "Bear". He later played for the world champion Detroit Lions helping them to victory over the New York Giants in the 1935 NFL Championship. Honoring his athletic achievements. Bear has been inducted in the Utah Sports Hall of Fame, the Utah State University Hall of Fame, and the Box Elder High School Wall of Fame. After his illustrious football career, Elmer served over three decades as the top civilian officer a the Defense Depot Ogden. In 1972, Elmer's civil service was recognized as he was only the ninth person in the United States to receive the Exceptional Civilian Service Award (the highest achievement award in the Defense Supply Agency). Mr. Ward valiantly served his country during World War II and attained the rank of Colonel before being discharged in 1947. Elmer also had a great love for the Boy Scouts of America where he served as vice president of the Bonneville Council. Other civic responsibilities included, director of the Northern Utah United Fund, director of the Greater Ogden Chamber of Commerce, and Utah State National Committeeman for the Reserve Officers Association Elmer also found time to own and operate the Ward Cherry Ranch in South Willard.
He is survived by his wife of Willard; one son and one daughter, Sharon (Fred) Hunsaker, Logan; Stephen (Brenda) Ward, Centerville; a sister, Edna (Glenn) Taylor, of Salt Lake City, and a brother, Orvis Ward, of North Ogden; five grandchildren, Brian, Jeff and Susie Hunsaker, Wendy Allan and Kiley Ward, and five great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by seven brothers and sisters.
Funeral services will be conducted Friday, March 29, 1 p.m., Linquist's Ogden Mortuary, 3408 Washington Blvd., with Bishop Kent Davis of the Willard 3rd Ward officiating. Friends may call at the funeral home, Thursday, 6-8 p.m. and Friday 11:15-12:45 p.m. Burial, Willard Cemetery.
Family suggests donations to Elmer H. "Bear" Ward Athletic Scholarship Fund, Development Office, Utah State University, Logan, Ut. 84322 or to Trapper Trails Council of Boy Scouts of American, 1200 East 5400 So., Ogden, Ut. 84403.
Funeral arrangements under the direction of Rogers, Taylor, & Nelson Funeral Homes.
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