Forest Mace Aker, 83, of Greencastle died Saturday morning, Dec. 18, 2004, in his home.
Born May 23, 1921, in Center Point, he was the son of Forest and Lucille (Mace) Aker. On Oct. 4, 1952, he married Betty Jane France who survives.
A lifelong resident of Putnam County, he grew up in Washington Township on the family farm and graduated from Reelsville High School. He attended Central Normal College, Canterbury College, Hobard College and received his MBA from Harvard University Business School. A Navy veteran of World War II, he served in the Armed Guard aboard the SS Exford in the North Africa, Mediterranean and North Atlantic theaters and was decorated for his participation. Later in the war, he attended Officer School in Boston, was commissioned and then was stationed for the remainder of the war at the Brooklyn Navy Yard as Supply Officer.
Before serving in World War II, he started his career with Central National Bank in 1939. His banking career spanned 48 years. He retired in 1987 as President and Chairman of the Board of the bank. Throughout his career at Central Bank, he was instrumental in deploying many innovative banking practices for both farm and business. Many of these models became banking industry standards.
He was very involved throughout his life in the community. He was past president of the Greencastle Chamber of Commerce, founding board member of Mainstreet Greencastle, Forest Hill Cemetery Board, draft board, Masonic Lodge, VFW and many other local organizations. He also served on the Historic Landmarks Foundation for Indiana board for several years and was regional director for the Indiana Bankers Association. He received the Greencastle Citizen of the Year award in 1985 and the Putnam County Friend of the Farmer award in 2001. He served on many building committees throughout his career, including Putnam County Hospital, First Baptist Church and Central National Bank. He was an active member of Greencastle First Baptist Church for more than 50 years. He served the church in many roles, and was most proud of the two building drives in which he was involved.
He was an avid collector of Indiana art and antiques throughout his life. He was a Life Member of the Indianapolis Museum of Art, Asian Arts Society and the Portfolio Club of Indianapolis.
Survivors include his wife; a daughter, Rebecca Aker of Philadelphia; a son, Stephen Mace Aker and wife, Vicki, of Reelsville; a sister, Marylee McCammack and husband, Myron, of Coatesville; and two granddaughters, Hanna and Grace Aker.
His parents preceded him in death.
Funeral services will be at 11 a.m. Wednesday in Bittles and Hurt Funeral Home with the Rev. Paul Bowen officiating.
Friends may call at the funeral home 4-8 p.m. Tuesday.
Burial will be in the Boone-Hutcheson Cemetery with Military rites.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Putnam County 4-H council, c/o Janice Frye, Courthouse Annex, 209 W. Liberty St., Greencastle, IN 46135.