Saturday, July 16, 2016

John Harmer 1934 -

John L. Harmer (born April 28, 1934) is a former California politician who served in the California State Senate as a Republican from 1966 to 1974. He went on to serve briefly as the 40th Lieutenant Governor of California from 1974 to 1975, after the resignation of Edwin Reinecke on October 4, 1974. Departing Governor Ronald Reagan appointed him to the post. He is now the vice president of Geely-USA, the American Division of the Chinese car maker Geely that along with Chery is one of the first Chinese automobile manufacturers to export to North American shores.

Harmer wrote the book Reagan: Man of Principle.

Harmer served as chairman of the Lighted Candle Society an organization opposed to pornography, and has filed briefs with the United States Supreme Court against pornography.

Harmer currently resides in Bountiful, Utah,  His wife Carolyn. Harmer is deceased as of 2015..

The Lighted Candle Society is directed by ten trustees who are responsible for the ongoing activities of the foundation.


Early life

John L. Harmer was born in 1934 in Salt Lake CityUtah.[2] His parents were Earl W. Harmer and Mabel Spande. He was one of their five children.[3] Harmer attended the University of Utah. While there, Harmer was part of the Frosh Handbook committee in 1954, that helped inform new freshmen about college life at the university. They made sure freshmen were aware of school events and activities.[4]:45 He was involved with debate, and was an intramural debate finalist in 1954.[4]:51 Harmer was part of the Phi Eta Epsilon fraternity.[5]:261 He was also one of the school's Vigilantes. These vigilantes were campus policemen who played roles in student government. They were also responsible for being judges for school elections.[5]:272
Harmer later obtained a law degree from George Washington University.[6] Harmer was involved with the student court, serving as the Chief Justice of the student court in 1959.[7] He married Carolyn Jonas on June 24, 1960, in the Los Angeles Temple and the couple had 10 children. Harmer is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.[1][8] Throughout his life, Harmer has been interested in astronomy.[9]


Republican Party

Harmer is a member of the Republican Party. He first entered politics by participating in Dwight D. Eisenhower's political campaign in 1952.[10] He was later an aide to U.S. Senator Wallace Bennett hired through the U.S. Department of the Interior's Bureau of Land Management. After, Harmer worked as an attorney in Glendale, California.[11] Before his election as a state senator, Harmer was also the director of public affairs with the National Association of Manufactures; he also worked for the Americans for Constitutional Action as a field representative.[10] In 1966, Harmer was a member of the Republican State Central Committee, State Central Committee, United Republicans of California, as well as being part of California Republican Associates, Young Republicans, and Republican Associates. By this time, he had also founded the San Fernando Valley Business and Professional Association.[10]

California State Senate[edit]

Harmer was a California politician who served in the California State Senate as a Republican from 1966 to 1974.[2] During his time in the senate, he authored SB 462, along with Anthony Beilenson, Alan Short, and Lewis F. Sherman. This act pertained to abortion. Harmer ran for attorney general in 1970 and lost. He resigned from the California State Senate in 1974, and ran again in 1976, but lost.[2]
In 1970 while serving in the State Senate and a candidate for state attorney general, Harmer sought permission to film a Los Angeles production of "Oh! Calcutta!" to gather evidence for his suit to prevent "irreparable damage to the morals of the community."[12]
He went on to serve briefly as the 40th Lieutenant Governor of California from 1974 to 1975,[2] after the resignation of Edwin Reinecke on October 4, 1974[13] due to being convicted of perjury.[14] Departing Governor Ronald Reagan appointed him to the post.[9] He only served for three months to cover the rest of Reinecke's term.[8] Harmer was referred to, however, as "one of the legislature's most conservative members."[8]
While living in California, Harmer was a regent of the University of California. He also served as a trustee of the California State University System and was a chairman for the Legislature Select Committee on Large Urban School Districts.[15]

Other contributions

He and his family moved to Bountiful, Utah in 1980 and later moved to Lindon, Utah. In Utah, Harmer was appointed the chairman of the National Center for Constitutional Studies. He also worked as a private attorney. He fought to eliminate indecency on cable television programs. In 1988, he was appointed chairman of Eyring, Inc.[15]
In 1999, Harmer traveled to Moscow, Russia as an attorney and was briefed in the U.S. Embassy on the Soviet Union's plans to use germ warfare against the U.S. in the 1970s and 1980s. This experience influenced him to write the book Ere His Floods of Anger Flow.[9]
Harmer became vice president of Geely-USA, the American Division of the Chinese car maker Geely that along with Chery is one of the first Chinese automobile manufacturers to export to North American shores.[16] Harmer founded the Lighted Candle Society in 2001.[2] He served as chairman of the Lighted Candle Society an organization opposed to pornography, and has filed briefs with the United States Supreme Court against pornography.[17]
Harmer is the author of several books including We Dare Not Fail (1968), Among the Living Are the Dead (1970), and The Sex Industrial Complex (2007).[2] He also wrote Reagan: Man of Principle.[18]

George Nelson: At the time the boys in the West Ward were playing church basketball and George was eagerly invited to join the team.  His height made a real difference to their play and eventually they played in the all church finals.  Phil Cameron, another new member of the church, played on the team.  California Senator John Harmer invited George to his home early each morning to learn scriptures and the missionary lessons. He has all six lessons learned before his call, unfortunately he was called to a Spanish speaking mission so he had to learn them all over again.  He learned 200 verses.  John had helped to formulate the discussions during his own mission.

CHAIRMAN: John L. Harmer
Mr. Harmer has had forty years of experience as an attorney, an elected public official, and an individual citizen in opposition to the production, distribution and consumption of pornography. He has collaborated on many legal briefs presented to various courts on pornography cases, including the Supreme Court of the United States. He is the author of various publications regarding pornography. The Lighted Candle Society now distributes his book which details his forty years of fighting against the pornography industry which is entitled, “A War We Must Win”.

There is a private graveside service this Wednesday, for immediate family only.  The memorial service will be January 27th, details to follow.  
This has been a difficult 3 months for the entire family.  John was hale and hearty as ever until the last week in August when, while working in PA on a memorial for Ronald Reagan, he leaned against a railing, which was apparently rusted through and fell backwards 9 feet onto a concrete stairwell and slid down 6 more stairs. He suffered a punctured lung, broken shoulder, multiple rib fractures and a significant head injury.  He was in a convalescent home in Bryn Mawr until the lung healed and seemed to do really well there, but I suspect that was sheer determination on his part to be able to return to UT.   Once in the UT convalescent home , the severity and permanence of the effects of the fall - especially his cognitive healing - became clear.  He was in such pain, emotionally and spiritually as well as physically, that the fight went out of him.  It was determined that he should go into hospice on Thursday, and died Friday afternoon at 4:00 pm. We are grateful he no longer suffers.  And he was truly blessed that, because of the sacrifice of his 10 children, one of them was with him every single day since the accident.