Lester Murray Wheeler, Jr., 81, of Marysville, East Pennsboro Twp. and formerly of New Cumberland, passed away with his loving family at his bedside on Tuesday, July 5, 2022, in UPMC Pinnacle West Shore Hospital, Hampden Twp.
He was a retired chief draftsman with Oven Industries, Mechanicsburg; a U.S. Air Force veteran of the Viet Nam War; Co-founder of Wheeler’s Towing in Mechanicsburg with his son, Michael; and a graduate of the former New Cumberland High School.
He excelled in the art of photography and particularly treasured capturing images of his friends and family.
Lester was thoroughly interested in and a collector of many things, especially Pennsylvania Railroad memorabilia, cast iron antiquities, and timeworn tools. He had a longtime love affair with antique cars and Harley Davidson motorcycles. He adored his (and everyone else’s) pet dogs and cats and would often be caught sneaking them treats at the dinner table. But mostly he cherished spending time with his family and friends, especially the occasions with his son, Michael, in the garage and trips to visit extended family in Missouri with his wife, Joyce, in the RV.
When not touring the various flea markets in the area, Lester could be found baking cookies or watching Gunsmoke on TV. He was an active member of American Legion Post 730, in Penbrook, PA and spent time as a member of the Blue Knights Motorcycle Club, Pioneer Camp in Williamsport, PA, and the local River Rats club. He was an active supporter in honor of Joyce’s father (Earl Williams) of the U.S.N. WWII Navy Armed Guard Reunions.
His everyday look was his signature style: white V-neck t-shirt, jeans, and size 14 sneakers (or cowboy boots in his younger days) …and when he was feeling really fancy like, he would pair it with a plaid long-sleeve shirt. Those who knew him in his younger years will remember the Wyle E. Coyote that rode with him on the back of his motorcycle and his favorite bear costume that he would wear to every party.
Lester was born to the late Lester and Ruth (Young) Wheeler, Sr. on August 24th, 1940, in Harrisburg, PA.
He is survived by his loving wife Joyce (Williams) Wheeler; children, Wendy Ann Witmer of New Bern, NC, Michael A. Wheeler (Kelly) of Mechanicsburg; stepchildren, Kymberlee Priest (Andy) of Harrisburg, and Jaclyn MacConnell (Pat) of Coatesville; his siblings, Romaine Reiner (Warren) of New Jersey and Russell B. Wheeler (Barbara) of Camp Hill; seven grandchildren, Kody T. Shaw, Sarah Witmer, Nia, Alex, Brody (“Mr. B”) Wheeler, Alexander and Rachael Priest; two great-grandchildren, Kenzie and Cammi; and several nieces and nephews.
A Celebration of Lester's Life will be held from 11 am until 2 pm on Sunday, August 14, 2022 at American Legion Post 101, 142 N. Hanover St. Carlisle, PA 17013.
In lieu of flowers, the family respectfully requests memorial contributions in Lester’s memory to American Legion Post 101 and sent to the address above..
To send messages of condolence to Lester’s family, please visit www.Parthemore.com