John Elder, III

Obituary of John Elder, III

John H. Elder III died Friday, May 25, 2018 in UPMC Presbyterian Hospital. He was born March 10, 1935 in Pittsburgh, the son of Margaret Riesmeyer Elder and John H. Elder, Jr.

John was an Eagle Scout and a graduate of Wilkinsburg High School. He attended Penn State University, and received a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Washington and Jefferson College, where he was a member of Alpha Tau Omega and played varsity football. Upon graduation, he received two offers to play professionally. He volunteered for the draft to join the US Army, where he became a cryptographer, on active service for two years and in the Reserves for two more.

He was employed as an adjustor for several insurance companies, retiring from Penn National Insurance in 2000.

He is survived by his wife of nearly 58 years, Kathryn McLaughlin Elder, his daughter Alta Elizabeth Elder of Latrobe, his son John H. Elder IV and his wife Meri Beth of Latrobe, his son David Matthew Elder of Nags Head, NC, his grandchildren, Margaret Rose Elder and John H. Elder V of Latrobe, and his godson Michael Kevin Leonescu of New York City, as well as several cousins.

John’s greatest delight was time spent with his grandchildren, followed closely by working around his old house. Most mornings began for him with a check online of the web cam in Kill Devil Hills, then giving observations of the state of the tide, the beach and the ocean.

John’s family will receive friends Wednesday, May 30th from 10 until 11 AM in the Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church, 331 Weldon Street, Latrobe, PA 15650, at which time a memorial service will be held with the church pastors officiating. Rather than flowers, his family requests contributions be made to the Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church at the above address, or to the Greater Latrobe Art Conservation Trust. Please mail to GLSD Art Conservation Trust, 131 High School Road, Latrobe, PA 15650. The Hartman-Graziano Funeral Home, Inc. in Latrobe is assisting the family with the arrangements. To post an online condolence, please visit