1998 Bill Kerlin

William “Bill” Kerlin

Bill Kerlin was born in 1909 and graduated from Delphi High School in 1927. He attended Indiana University Business School for three years.

He married Evelyn Hodgen in 1939, and they had one son, Sam, who is now deceased.

Kerlin was involved in the family grain business and they ventured into the supplement business as one of the early pioneers. He was curious about the product so he went to Purdue to find out the proper way to make and sell this new product.

From this, a new business was formed. They held several meetings to teach their customers how to test hens so the chicks would live and grow better. Everything was going great, and then the roof caved in. World War 2 ruined everything for Kerlin and his customers. A key employee, Pete Weaver, was called first, and then Kerlin.

Kerlin ended up in officers’ training and served at several camps with the 100th division. He was sent overseas in April 1944 and on to Normandy in June of 1944. He was severely wounded on August 17, 1944. After a lengthy recovery form was wounds, he returned to the grain business in 1946 and retired in 1985. Kerlin is remembered by many of his former customers for his compassion and ability to carry them when times were very difficult on the farm.

Kerlin spent the majority of his life in Delphi. He was a member of the Delphi City Council, Boy Scouts of America, and the Selective Service Board. He was active in the Carroll County Republican Central Committee as well as being a member of the Purdue President’s Council. He is a 54-year member of the Delphi Presbyterian Church, where he serves as Deacon, Elder, and Trustee.

He retired from the Army as 1st Lieutenant. His decorations include Combat Infantry Badge, Bronze Star, Purple Heart, three Campaign Medals, and a Victory Medal.

Mr. and Mrs. Kerlin now make their home at Westminster Village in West Lafayette.

February 11, 2010

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