Russell Kemmerer, 84, of Indianapolis, and a former MLB player, completed his final innings in the game of life on Monday, Dec. 8, 2014.
He was born born Nov. 1, 1930, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, to Frederick and Thursa Mae Kemmerer. He was the youngest of five children.
He signed his first major-league contract with the Boston Red Sox at the age of 18. His big-league career spanned a total of 11 years, pitching for Boston, Washington, Chicago and Houston.
Following his retirement from baseball, Russ’s passion for his fellow man led him into the ministry, where he pastored several area churches. It was his work with various youth programs that led Russ to pursue a career in coaching, which gave him an opportunity to not only share his faith with young men but to also teach life lessons that Russ so often found in athletics.
His teachings carried him to several places in the state including Indiana University, Ellettsville, Milan, Heritage Christian and Lawrence Central, where he retired from in 1998. Shortly after his retirement, he became a published author when he penned the book titled “Hey Kid, Just Get It Over The Plate,” a book about his major-league experiences and humorous stories about the twinkling stars of his era.
Survivors include his wife, Susannah Kemmerer; sons, Russell (Rita) Kemmerer of Indianapolis, and Darrel (Julie) Kemmerer of North Vernon; daughters, Cheryl (Doug) Ray of Seymour, and Kim (Bob) Band of Cicero; also, Brad (Kim) Potter, Brian (Rebekah) and MaKayla Potter, and Renee (Doug Cannon) Potter. He was a beloved grandfather to Matt, Jami, Molly, Adam, Ryan, Tyler, Josh, Leah and Brooke; and great-grandfather to Malory and Andrew.
He was preceded in death by his first wife, Elizabeth Kemmerer; and a grandson, Robbie Band.
Friends may call from 5 to 8 p.m. Friday at Indiana Funeral Care and Crematory, Harry W. Moore Chapel, 8151 Allisonville Road, Indianapolis.
The funeral service will be from 11 a.m. to noon Saturday at Abundant Life Church, 7606 E. 82nd St., Indianapolis.
There will be a celebration of life to honor his life and memories at a future date.