Dr. Asher passed away June 14, 2016
January 16, 1929 – June 14, 2016
Wilmer Lee Asher ’61 (Bill) age 87, passed away on June 14, 2016, in Littleton, Colorado.
Bill was born on January 16, 1929, to Clair and Lillian Loomis Asher on his paternal grandparents’ farm near Sweetwater, Nebraska. His parents separated shortly after his birth. When he was 7 months old, he along with his 2-year-old sister, Jean, moved with their mother to Gibbon, Nebraska, where they lived with Grandmother Loomis.
With the financial burdens on his mother, who worked cleaning homes, young Bill accepted responsibility early, and at age 6 delivered groceries to homes in the neighborhood, which earned him a nickel per delivery. With these earnings, he was able to buy his own overalls that cost 67 cents.
Bill was 9 years old when his mother married William Rohde, a widowed farmer with a 3-year old daughter. While living on the Rohde farm in Custer County, Nebraska, Bill and Jean attended a local school, with Bill working on the farm during his spare hours. The marriage brought two more children – Juanita and Carol into the family.
At age 13, Bill enrolled in Shelton Academy, (later renamed Platte Valley Academy), in Shelton Nebraska. Being the youngest student, he was also the shortest. Three years later, he was the tallest at 6′ 3″.
Following his graduation in 1945 from Shelton Academy, Bill entered Union College in Lincoln, Nebraska, dropping out for two years to work and save his earnings for future college expenses.
In the summer of 1951, a few weeks after graduation, Bill married Verlene Wall, also a 1951 graduate from Union College. They made their home in Lincoln for several years. During this time, Bill took graduate work at the University of Nebraska, built 6 houses, and developed 25 building sites. Mike, the first of their 4 boys, was born during this time.
These earnings, plus Verlene’s teaching salary, made it possible to pay his way through medical school at Loma Linda University, in Loma Linda, California.
Since he didn’t plan to be a physician while in college, he lacked the necessary courses, which he made up at LaSierra University. Verlene’s teaching found a short interruption with Joe’s birth in Loma Linda. Randy was born in Los Angeles during Bill’s junior year in medical school.
After receiving his M.D. degree in 1961, he interned at Porter Memorial Hospital in Denver, Colorado. Before starting his own practice in weight control in 1964, Bill practiced general medicine at the Gates Rubber Company, performed physicals for Martin Marietta Corporation, and did research at the Mercy Institute for Biomedical Research. Jeff was born in 1967 at Porter Memorial Hospital.
In 1974, Bill began buying and managing apartment buildings and established Asher Investments. He also continued to run a full-time medical practice specializing in weight control.
He is survived by his sons, Mike, Joe, Randy, Jeff, 6 grandchildren, two half-sisters – Juanita Williamson and Carol Case, and a stepsister Pauline Holm.
(Source: Horan & McConaty Funeral)