John L. Primmer, of South Ryegate, Vermont, passed away Sunday, Aug., 29, 2021 at Central Vermont Medical Center. John was born Feb. 21, 1941, in Sioux City, Iowa, to the late Lyle Fraser and Florence Truesdell Primmer.
John graduated from East High School in Sioux City, and as an undergraduate, attended University of Oklahoma, Morningside University, and Southern Methodist University (SMU), Dallas, Texas. In 1966, he received his BA from SMU and law degree from Southern Methodist University School of Law, where he also was editor-in-chief of SMU Law Review, 1965-66.
Upon graduation from law school, John practiced corporate law at Dewey, Ballantine, Bushby, Palmer & Wood, New York, New York from 1966-1971. John then joined the law firm of Yandell, Page & Archer, Burlington, Vt., 1971. He was recruited by Downs, Rachlin & Martin, St. Johnsbury, Vt., served as corporate attorney, managing partner, and developed the captive insurance industry in state of Vermont. John led efforts to change state corporate laws to accommodate the growing client need. In 1982 he was a founding partner of Primmer & Piper in St. Johnsbury, Vt. This firm later evolved into Primmer, Piper Eggleston & Cramer PC, with offices in Littleton, N.H., Burlington, Vt., Manchester, N.H., Montpelier, Vt., Portsmouth, N.H. and Washington, DC. It is now one of Northern New England’s largest law firms with more than 40 attorneys.
In 1963 John married Patricia Ann Primmer and they had a son, Robert Ethan Primmer of Cambridge, Mass. In 1984 he married Donna Holmberg Primmer and they had a son, Daniel William Primmer of South Ryegate. John is survived by his first wife, Patricia of Fort Worth, Texas, sons- Robert and wife, Shira Fruchtman and Daniel and wife Brianne Lynn Primmer, siblings- Janice Gassman of Canyon Country, Calif.; and Judy Tolman of Denver, Colo.;. and grandchildren, Sophia Rose Primmer, Elsa Jane Primmer, Joel Fraser Primmer. John was predeceased by his brother Joel Primmer and his wife, Donna.
In the 1990s John and Donna owned and operated the South Peacham Store.
John was a loving father and grandfather and a devoted husband. He was a great cook and loved hosting others. He loved music and singing chamber music. He sang in the North Country chorus and recorded radio jingles during college. He enjoyed being outdoors, fishing, camping, golfing, and travelling. Each year he gathered with his sons for a golf trip, often on the west coast. His favorite trip was a month-long trip to Florence, Italy. John loved his dogs—Roy, Merle, and countless dogs before them. He had a passionate and astute view of the world and politics. He loved to write.
Donations in his name can be made to Central Vermont Humane Society or your local dog rescue organization.
A Celebration of John’s life will be held in the Spring of 2022.
Ricker Funeral Home & Cremation Care of Woodsville is in charge of arrangements.