On April 1, 2009, Russell E. Yeager passed into the loving arms of his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Born December 21, 1938, he was the son of the late Albert L. Yeager, Lancaster, PA and Mary Elslager Yeager, Columbia, PA.
Russell grew up in Lancaster, graduating from Lancaster Catholic High School on June 1, 1956. Upon graduation, he enlisted in the U.S. Air Force for what would culminate in a 20-year career. Russell's Air Force service took him around the world and included a 51-month tour in Vietnam between 1969 and 1973 working with the Republic of Vietnam Armed Forces and the Montagnard natives of Vietnam.
Following his discharge and retirement from the Air Force on September 1, 1976, he worked for the Alyeska Pipeline Service Company on the Trans Alaska Pipeline System. Eventually, Russell returned to his roots in Lancaster renewing relationships with family and friends while caring for his mother until her death in 2002.
Russell's life then took a new direction -- this time with a move to the U.S. Armed Forces Retirement Home in Gulfport, MS. He enjoyed life along the Gulf Coast with his fellow veteran friends until Hurricane Katrina forced their evacuation in 2005 to the U.S. Armed Forces Retirement Home in Washington, DC where he lived until his passing on April 1.
A quiet, self-effacing man, Russell was known for his kindness and generosity. He chose to view people and life in a positive light, and had a wonderful sense of humor that everyone would agree was "pure Russ."
Russell is survived by an uncle, Frederick E. Elslager, Columbia; six cousins: Gerald R. Baker, Willow Street; Kenneth L. and Ronald K. Baker, both of Strasburg; Alice M. Best, Rohrerstown; Frederick J. Elslager and Margaret A. Willis, both of Columbia; their respective spouses and families.
Russell is dearly missed by his family and friends in Lancaster County as well as his "family" in Washington, DC.
A remembrance service of Russell's life with interment will be held at a future date.
Arrangements Entrusted to the Andrew T. Scheid Funeral Home, 717-872-2266.