Remembering Lowell C. Hammer, Emeritus Professor, 1930 – 2015

Published: June 18th, 2015

Category: News & Events

Obituary for Lowell C. Hammer

cleft palate team 1971

Cleft Palate Team – 1971 (Lowell Hammer, seated right)

Lowell Clarke Hammer

Lowell Clarke Hammer died in Gainesville, Florida on Monday, June 15th, 2015.

Dr. Hammer was born January 7, 1930 to Clara Victoria Johnson Hammer and Charles Price Hammer in Council Bluffs, IA. He grew up in Wichita, KS and graduated from Wichita East High School and Wichita State University.

He is survived by his wife of nearly 66 years, Beverly Jean Wellborn Hammer, whom he married on July 10, 1949. They have two children, David Clarke Hammer (Atlanta, GA) and Christine Hammer Thompson (John David – San Diego, CA), four grandchildren, Emma Rose Thompson, Daniel Russell Thompson, Joshua Hammer Thompson, and Nicole Christina Hammer, and two great-grandchildren, Elizabeth and Gabrielle Thompson.

Dr. Hammer worked for the Institute of Logopedics in Wichita, KS, and then became Director of Speech and Hearing for the Children’s Rehabilitation Institute in Reisterstown, MD.

The family moved to Gainesville in August 1960, where he began pursuing his doctorate in Speech Pathology and Audiology at the University of Florida. Dr. Hammer earned his Ph.D. in 1966, and joined the faculty of the Department of Communicative Disorders.

Dr. Hammer retired as Emeritus Professor of Speech Pathology and Audiology after 33 years in the College of Health Related Professions (now known as the College of Public Health and Health Professions), where he also served as Acting Dean. During his career, he authored numerous professional papers and book chapters.

He was a former president of the Florida Speech and Hearing Association. He also served for many years as a consultant to the Florida Cleft Palate Association, and traveled monthly to treat patients at its Orlando facility.

Following his retirement, Dr. Hammer served the Alachua County Coalition for the Homeless and Hungry in a variety of volunteer positions. Along with his beloved Beverly, Dr. Hammer was an active member and supporter of First United Methodist Church of Gainesville.

Lowell and Beverly were junior high school sweethearts, and then fell in love forever in college. Their enduring love, laughter, care, and compassion for one another blessed everyone who knew them.

In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the First United Methodist Church of Gainesville, or to the Lowell C. Hammer Founders Fellowship Fund, Department of Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences, UF College of Public Health and Health Professions.

Visitation with the family will be from 4:00 – 6:00 p.m. on Friday, June 19 at WILLIAMS-THOMAS FUNERAL HOME, 404 N. Main St. A Celebration of Life will be officiated by Rev. Sara McKinley at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, June 20 at First United Methodist Church of Gainesville, 419 NE First St. A luncheon will follow in the Church’s Fellowship Hall.

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