HESLER, Alfred J. - Fountain County INGenWeb Project

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HESLER, Alfred J.

Source: Crawfordsville Journal Review 17 May 1971 p 4

VEEDERSBURG -- Alfred J. Hesler, 86, retired Fountain County agriculture agent, educator and world traveler, died Sunday in Westminister Village in Greenwood. He had been a patient for several weeks and in failing health two years. Mr. Hesler resided in rural Veedersburg. Mr. Hesler taught school before becoming Fountain County 4-H Club leader in 1919 for the program which he started in this county. He became Fountain County agriculture extension agent in 1922 and served for 25 years before retiring in 1947. During his years as county agent he was responsible for many projects. In 1928 he was instrumental in securing the first rural electrification program in this county, a program which became a pilot model for similar programs throughout the U.S. Largely through his efforts the Fountain County Soil Conservation District was established in 1944. In 1946 he served a term as president of Indiana Association of County Agents. He was awarded a certificate of distinction by Purdue Agriculture Alumni Association for outstanding service to agriculture in 1960. Following retirement Mr. Hesler traveled extensively, making three trips around the world with numerous side trips to Europe, Africa, South America, Australia and New Zealand. During this period he became overseas director for World Neighbors in '52 and '54. In later years he was the prime mover in the formation of the Fountain County Historical Society. He was field representative for Colorado College and a co-director of Fountain County rural electrification program. He was also a member of Liberty Guard in World War I and was on the governor's commission for Indiana Sesquicentennial in 1966. For 37 years he served as elder in New Liberty Christian Church where he had been an active member and leader since 1898. He was a charter member of Veedersburg Lions Club and one of the individuals responsible for the formation of the Greencastle Production Credit Association. A graduate of Veedersburg High School in 1905 he attended Wabash College, Crawfordsville, and received a degree from Colorado College in 1911. He was born May 6, 1885, to Clinton F. and Laura Youngblood Hesler on a Fountain County farm where he lived all his life. He married Clara Rapp on Oct. 12, 1912, in Seymour. Surviving are his widow and a brother, Dr. Lex R. Hesler of Knoxville, Tenn. Services will be conducted at 1:30 p.m. Wednesday in New Liberty Christian Church. The body will lie in state one hour prior to services. Rev. Mike Smythers and Rev. Bruce Darnall will officiate. Burial will be in Rockville Cemetery. Friends may call at the Parham Funeral home from 2-4 and 7-9 p.m. Tuesday.  --typed by Walt W

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