Tributes to ‘proud’ Stowmarket car dealer, 94
- Credit: Archant
A family have paid tribute to a well-known Stowmarket businessman and war veteran who was chairman of one of the town’s longest-established car dealers.
John Gammer, founder of Gammers of Stowmarket, then a Ford dealership, died aged 94 and leaves behind his wife, two children and four grandchildren.
His son Bruce, who now runs the Stowupland Road business with his wife Fiona, said: “He was a proud father and loved his family very much. He was a hard worker and was very involved in the business up until 10 years ago. He cared a lot for everyone and loved his grandchildren who he was very proud of.”
The Second World War veteran saw active service as a Tank Commander in the 79th Armoured Division, serving in what came to be known as Hobart’s Circus, a collection of highly-modified tanks designed to overcome a series of problems standard tanks had encountered during a failed beach landing.
“He joined the army at the start of the war,” Mr Gammer said.
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“It was in 1954 that he bought into the garage then called Fidlers. He bought into the garage with the Fidler family.
“It was 1976, just after I started working for the garage, that it became Gammers.”
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The former 1st Stowmarket Scout group member John Gammer, who also owned and worked the family farm just outside the town, was the third generation of the family in Stowmarket – a tradition continued by his son.
“We are a Stowmarket family,” he said. “We don’t wander very far either – when I have to pick up cars and it is further away than Bury St Edmunds, I have to start checking the map.”
Ford cars were a big part of John Gammer’s life. “He loved them,” added Mr Gammer. “Not just the old classic ones, he was always asking what Ford we were driving and what it was like. That is why I had three Fords at his funeral – they were from our classic car side of the business and I just thought he would have really liked that.”