Fred Pamer retired his custodial business in the Phoenix Valley in 2002, and then moved to Prescott Valley.
This 77-year-old, though, was never planning to be idle. He is a great-grandfather on the go – if he’s not behind the wheel of a Humboldt Unified School District school bus he is on the lookout for ways to give to others.
A smiling, humble man, the Prescott Valley resident who with his wife, Susan, have three adult children, five grandchildren and one great-grandchild, said he is happiest when he is doing a good deed for someone to make their life a little bit less frantic. His philanthropic endeavors inspired by his faith include supplying new school backpacks and supplies to as many as 300 children this year and buying gifts for as many as 400 children at the holidays. This year, Pamer and the church sponssored its first annual new school clothing drive that provided new clothes for 17 Humboldt students.
Pamer recently managed to cover the airfare for a bus driver and the driver’s two young sons so they could travel to the East Coast for the funeral of a beloved relative. He and his wife once donated a second car to their then-church for resale as a fundraising event.
Never mind the times he has figured out a way to pay somebody’s electric bill, cover a rent payment or help them find a used car so they can drive themselves to the job they need to support their family.
The Trinity Lutheran Church deacon is quick to say he does not do this alone.
He counts on the generosity of more businesses than he can count as well as congregants, neighbors, colleagues, area golfers and students who without hesitation answer his call for donations, be it cash, supply or service.
“It’s unbelievable,” Pamer said of the willingness he finds in people whenever they hear of a need.
Pamer admits he cannot ignore someone in distress, particularly a child.
He will either cover the need out of his pocket, or he will see to it he figures out who to ask for what is needed.
“It’s not just me,” Pamer said of the contributors to the causes he spearheads. “I’m just the one who goes out to ask. If you don’t ask, the answer is, ‘No.’ ”
The Rev. Tim Blau, pastor of Trinity Lutheran Church, said Pamer is without a doubt an “unsung hero.”
For the last 11 years, Blau said he has mobilized people in the church and area businesses to make a difference for those within their own community, particularly in the lives of its children.
“He raises thousands of dollars. It’s awesome,” Blau said.
The standing joke in the church is that Pamer is a “bulldog” when it comes to fundraising for the causes so dear to his heart.
“Unless you say, “No,” he’ll keep asking,” Blau said. “He has a huge heart to help others.”
Pamer praises the church and its members for their willingness to embrace such a ministry.
Blau suggests Pamer bears the credit for inspiring others to follow in his spiritual path.
“If we didn’t have this church, he’d do it anyway,” Blau said. “You can’t stop him.”