Albert Hammer, 85, of Greenville, SC passed away on Wednesday, August 29th, 2018. Al is survived by his children, Richard Hammer (Christina) of Succasunna, NJ, & Jeffrey Hammer (Missy) of Simpsonville, SC and two amazing granddaughters (Sophia and Lucia). He is also survived by two sisters, Betty Steinberg of Greenville, SC and Selma Kleiman of Colonia, NJ, and two brothers Michael Hammer (June) of Westfield, NJ and Robert Hammer of Boynton Beach, FL as well as ex-wife Judy Gold (Jerry) of Berkeley Heights, NJ. Additionally, Al is survived by many cousins, nieces, and nephews whom he loved dearly.
He was preceded in death by his father Benjamin Hammer, mother Bessie Hammer, mother-in-law Rose Ottenstein, father-in-law David Ottenstein, sisters Shirley Friedman, Harriet Goodman, and Annette Hammer.
Born in Newark, NJ, Al spent a year studying at Fairleigh Dickinson University before serving his country for fourteen months stationed in Korea as an Army radio communications specialist at the end of the Korean War. Upon his return to New Jersey, he ventured into a variety of careers. Al was an accomplished salesman who was a partner in his own real estate agency in the 1970’s and in the early 1980’s, he was the co-owner of Harry’s restaurant in Edison, New Jersey. While employed as a Service Technician during the mid-1980’s to mid-1990’s, Al earned the reputation of being a problem solver and someone who could fix complex pieces of machinery when others could not. He was employed by Ce De Candy, Warner Lampert, Robert Bosch, and M&M Mars from where he finally retired.
The greatest joy in Al’s life came from being a proud father and grandfather. It was rare that you could have a conversation with him without hearing about his sons and granddaughters. This love and joy also extended to his very well-fed dachshunds Mac, Farley (co-parented with Jeff) and Cinnamon, as well as his lovable mutt Lucky, who were all as spoiled as dogs could possibly be. While he always made sure that his four-legged-family were well-fed, the same can be said for his human family. Al was an amazing cook who was best known for his Hungarian-style brisket, spaghetti and meatballs, potato salad, mashed potatoes, latkes, oil and vinegar salad dressing, and banana pudding (Sophia’s favorite).
Al was a lifelong fan of the NY Yankees and NY Giants. He served as an equipment manager for the Berkeley Heights PAL football program in the 1980’s when Jeff and Rich were playing and was also a supporter of the wrestling team. A card-carrying liberal, Al loved to debate politics and current events with anyone who was willing to engage him. He enjoyed vacations with his family on Edisto Island, SC over the past few years and loved the U.S. and British Virgin Islands. Two of his all-time favorite vacations were to London and Colorado.
Al lived most of his life in New Jersey, but he truly loved his final hometown of Greenville, South Carolina where he spent the last nine years. While in Greenville, he led a very active life. At 80 years of age, he completed a 5K race and at 85 he participated in water aerobics classes three days a week at the Cleveland Street YMCA.
Al leaves behind a deep legacy of a caring man who would give the shirt off his back to help those in need. He will be dearly missed, and his memory will be an enduring blessing to all that knew and loved him.
A Celebration of Life will be held at Palmetto Mortuary (1017 Mauldin Road, Greenville, South Carolina, 29607) on Saturday, September 8th, 2018 at 2:00 pm. Anyone in attendance that would like to share a story or memory of Al is encouraged to do so. In lieu of flowers, we encourage everyone to donate to your favorite animal-related charity in Al’s memory.