Jack W. Bremer

April 7, 1934 ~ April 30, 2020 (age 86)


Jack W. Bremer

Burlington, VT

Jack W. Bremer passed away peacefully on Thursday Morning April 30, 2020 while accompanied by his loving wife, Lilly Bremer. Jack was born in Iola, KS on April 7, 1934 and was raised by his parent Francis and Hazel Bremer, along with his brother, Jerry Bremer.

In high school, Jack was active in drama, music, athletics, and photojournalism.    He graduated from Ottawa University in 1956, and then served in the United State Army Signal Corps and rose to director of technical training films for field communications.

Jack graduated from Yale University Divinity School with an M.DIV in 1961, then in 1962 graduated again from Yale University Divinity School with an S.T.M   14 years later, in 1976,  he graduated from San Francisco Theological Seminary with a D.Min.

Jack was a learned man, but he was so much more.   He was an ordained minister in the United Methodist Church, serving parishes in Kansas and serving as the Chaplain at the University of Kansas in Lawrence, and later at Northwestern University.   Over his years as Chaplain, he was a pastoral friend to several thousand students in the formative years of their lives.

Jack was a champion for social justice and peacemaking.   He was active and volunteered in many ways,   He served on the Central American Refugee Committee, the Faculty for Human Rights in both El Salvador and Central America.    He served on the Religious Task force on Christian Base Communities in War Zones.   He was also part of the American-Iranian Reconcilication Committee.   In Iran, he was a mediator with Iranian Students holding the American hostages at the Embassy in Teheran.    Some of those Iranians students knew Dr. Bremer from attending his classes and it was their respect for his truthfulness and reverance for God that helped open the doors for him to visit with and attend to the hostages.   He then reported on the situation to President Carter in the White house.   He also served on friendship missions to Cuba and Russia.   He received the Francis Asbury Award for Fostering Ministry in Higher Education and was ultimately elected to the Hall of Fame by the National Campus Ministry Association.  

Jack was a humble man and lived simply, delighted to have his soulmate Lilly by his side, helping him enjoy his retirement in Burlington on the eastern shore of Lake Champlain.   Even after retirement Jack continued to serve on the Board of Cooperative Ministry and on the Committee on Human Subjects in Medical Research at the University of Vermont.   He was featured in a series of television firms on the topics of spirituality, ethics, and peacemaking.

Jack earned the love and consideration of folks very quickly with his quiet charm and quick wit.   He welcomed many to his house and had kinds words for everyone.   He will be missed but fondly remembered by his wife, Lilly Bremer, stepson WiIliam Yuze Li, daughters Rev. Deborah Laporte (Richard St Gelais) and Sarah (Peter) Bremer Parks of Topeka, KS, and granchildren Moses Laporte and Hazel Irene Bremer Parks.  

A private graveside service took place on Tuesday May 5th.   Details will follow regarding a video accessible memorial service.   Memorials donations may be sent to:  First United Methodist Church 21 Buell St. Burlington, VT 05401.   Arrangement made through Corbin and Palmer Funeral Home, Essex Jct., VT.


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A private graveside service took place on Tuesday May 5th

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