Clem Looks Back on Life Before Joining Primrose

By | June 10, 2013
Clem Weber

Clem Weber, Primrose resident

Retirement Communities in Austin, MN

Clemence Weber was born and raised on a farm outside of Meyer, Iowa, just 8 miles south of Adams, Minnesota. He took a sabbatical from his formal education after completing the 8th grade, when he went to work as a farm hand at age 14.

He began driving a cab at 18, for the Austin Cab Company, and worked as a mechanic in the cab garage. He continued farming in Mitchell County and in the off season worked at Hormel’s Packing Plant in the rendering department.

Ask him about the rendering work and he’ll say, “You could not imagine how much that stunk. They boiled blood in there to make tankage for pig feed.”

Clemence went back to driving cab, which he enjoyed.

Clem wasn’t eligible for the draft during World War II, but he enlisted in the US Army in 1946 and was sent to Fort McClellan in Alabama for boot camp.

At that time, Fort McClellan was an old army base and the recruits lived in dilapidated huts. Clem said it was very hot and humid, and the huts would leak whenever it rained so they slept with raincoats over their heads.

Clem thought Fort McClellan was the worst place he had ever experienced…until the Army sent him to Korea with the Sixth Infantry Division.

“The Army always sent me to a place that was worse than the one I had just left,” Clem states.

In Pusan, Korea, he worked in the motor pool overhauling engines and performing tune-ups. He rose to the rank of Tech Sergeant, becoming Sergeant of the motor pool.

At the time, Korea had just endured about 20 years of brutal occupation by the Japanese; there was no sanitation and very little food. Clem and his fellow soldiers were instructed to stay on the base and eat only the food that was supplied there because the Koreans didn’t have enough food to feed themselves.

After 15 months, Clem left Korea and was discharged to San Francisco, California.

He was awarded the World War II Victory Medal, Army of Occupation of Japan Medal, Honorable Service Lapel Button, and Sharpshooter Badge and Rifle Bar.

After Clem’s discharge, he began farming in Mitchell County, Iowa, and working at Hormel’s in the off season. In November of 1950, he married Arlys Mulick of Riceville, Iowa. The couple had four children.

In the spring of 1951, Clem went to work for Usems Chevrolet as an auto mechanic while still farming. In 1953, he purchased and operated the Standard Station on Winona Street (now 1st St. SW). He operated Weber Standard until 1956, when he sold it to go back to school to become a tool and die maker. Upon graduation, he went to work for Tonka Toys in Mound, Minnesota. In 1964, Clem returned to Austin to work at American Can Company until his retirement in 1983. During this time he farmed with this youngest brother, Arnold.

Clem didn’t have any “official” hobbies when he retired, so he busied himself buying houses and fixing them to either rent or sell. He contined this industrious hobby for the next 25 years until health concerns forced him to truly retire. Clem now resides at the Austin Primrose.

To find out more about the vast backgrounds of the residents at Primrose, please contact your nearest Primrose Retirement Community today to see more of our fun and social living. We’ll happily answer all your questions and show you around our beautiful communities. Come see why we say, THIS IS LIVING!


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