2013-12-07 / Obituaries

Ernest Henton Harter

Ernest Henton Harter, age 93, of Thurston, died December 1, 2013, at Homestead Center. He was born on March 1, 1920, in Thurston, to his parents, Lafayette and Ina Snyder Harter.

Ernie grew up in Thurston and was the owner of Harter’s Garage started by his father, Lafe, in 1914, and later named Harter’s Oldsmobile. Through his business, he learned that many shared his passion for antique cars, and became a founding member and leader of the Lancaster Old Car Club in 1957, a group still going strong today. He personally restored three antique cars of his own, a 1930 Oldsmobile Sport Coupe, a 1947 Oldsmobile sedan, and a Triumph TR6 convertible. Ernie and his wife, JoAnn, traveled the country to many car shows over the years and won many awards, including the Founder’s Trophy at the Antique Olds Club of America National Show. Ernie was known for being a perfectionist and it showed in the quality of his restorations. He thoroughly enjoyed sharing his knowledge with others, contributing his time as a member and subject matter expert to the National Antique Oldsmobile Club.

In addition to his passion for antique automobiles, Ernie was very active in his community. He was honored as the 2009 Grand Marshall of the Millersport Sweet Corn Festival parade, in recognition of his outstanding contributions as a longtime volunteer and supporter of the Festival. He served for many years on the Thurston Volunteer Fire Department, later as village mayor, lifelong member and volunteer of the Thurston United Methodist Church, Olivedale Senior Center and Malibu Racing Team, Ohio Heritage Association and Thurston Museum volunteer.

Ernie is survived by his daughter, Lisa (Steve Peirce) Harter of Dana Point, CA; son, Don (Kimberly) Harter of Lancaster; grandchildren, Angela Taylor, Jeremy Kistler, Tyler Harter, McKenna Harter; sister-in-law, Norma J. Fenstermaker of Baltimore; and nieces and nephews. He is preceded in death by his wife, JoAnn Harter; and his parents, Lafe and Ina Harter.

Funeral service is at 11 a.m. on Friday, Dec. 6, 2013, at the Thurston United Methodist Church, officiated by Rev. Dr. Rebeka Maples. Burial follows at Floral Hills Memorial Garden. Family and friends may call 2 -4 and 6 - 8 p.m. Thursday at the Johnson-Smith Funeral Home, Baltimore, and one hour prior to the service at the church. Memorials can be made in his name to Thurston United Methodist Church, 2015 Main St. NE Thurston, OH 43157. Online condolences can be made at www.funeralhome.com

Return to top