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49ers Honor Lifelong Fan

Posted by Sam Good on January 19, 2011 – 11:18 AM

The San Francisco 49ers would like honor Gran DeMerritt, a lifelong 49ers fan, who passed away over the weekend. Gran served as a 49ers usher for all 24 years the team played at Kezar Stadium and had worked in the Candlestick Park press box ever since. Gran led an extraordinary life dedicated to public service, and his presence on gameday will be missed.

His obituary is below.

DeMERRITT, Granville (Gran) Martin Was born in San Francisco, CA on June 27, 1924 passed away on January 14, 2011. Gran grew up in the Excelsior District, attended St. Joseph’s Grammar School and Balboa High School where he excelled in football and track and field. Gran left school in December 1942 to serve in the U.S. Army in World War II, participating in the vicious Burma Campaign under General “Vinegar Joe” Stilwell. Gran was honorably discharged in January 1946 and returned to San Francisco where, in April 1946 he married the love of his life, Alice Warrender. While Alice worked, Gran pursued his education under the GI Bill and graduated from Stanford University in June 1950 with a degree in Political Science. Gran enjoyed a long career in public service, notably the Federal Government and the City and County of San Francisco. His occupations included Executive Director of the Civil Service Association of San Francisco, Director of Personnel and Employee Relations with the San Francisco Unified School District, and General Manager/Actuary of the San Francisco City and County Employees Retirement System. Gran retired in June 1986. During Gran’s working career he devoted many years to two activities: The San Mateo County Board of Education, where he served for 16 years as an elected Trustee, including six years as a charter member of the Board’s Personnel Commission; and the San Francisco Forty Niners, where he served as an usher from the first year 1946 at Kezar Stadium and, in 1971 until 2011, in the Press Box at Candlestick Park, a span of 65 years. Gran and Alice raised their family in South San Francisco in Avalon Park. During those years, Gran was very active in PAL Baseball and in Pop Warner Football. In 1987, Gran and Alice moved to the Oakmont Retirement Community in Santa Rosa where they have enjoyed more than 23 years of blissful life. Gran enjoyed many years of golf and his participation in several clubs and organizations, notably, The Godfathers Club (St. Vincent School for Boys), the Stanford Club of Oakmont, the Oakmont Walkers Club, SIRs, American Legion Post 21 and, among others, the San Francisco Baseball Oldtimers Association and the Pacific Coast League Historical Society. Gran participated in many activities on behalf of the Star of the Valley Catholic Church in Oakmont. Gran is survived by his lovely wife of 65 years, Alice; by his two children, Linda and Marty (Colleen); by his four granddaughters: Shelley (Dustin), Alicia, Amanda and Amy; and by his great grandson, Alexander Granville. Gran is also survived by his brother, Warren; and by numerous nephews, nieces and cousins. Gran will be sorely missed and leaves a legion of friends locally and nationwide. Family and friends are invited to a Memorial Mass on January 22, 2011 at 11:00 a.m. at Star of the Valley Church, 545 White Oak Drive, Santa Rosa (Oakmont). Committal services were privately held at Santa Rosa Memorial Park. Memorial contributions in Gran’s name may be made to St. Vincent’s School for Boys in San Rafael, Catholic Charities or a charity of your choice. Arrangements entrusted to: SANTA ROSA MORTUARY EGGEN AND LANCE CHAPEL. 545-3747


Posted in Announcements | 8 Comments »


8 Responses to “49ers Honor Lifelong Fan”

  1. By Shuuugo on Jan 19, 2011 | Reply

    RIP fellow faithful

  2. By Clark Zapper on Jan 19, 2011 | Reply

    I applaud Gran for all his dedication. I love seeing fans with heart like this. I Pray a peaceful journey back home!

  3. By Nate Moore on Jan 19, 2011 | Reply

    Truly the definition of ’49er Faithful’. You will be missed!

  4. By John J. Hills on Jan 19, 2011 | Reply

    Gran was one my oldest and best friends – 64 years from Stanford days (all those basketball games at Encina – Babe Higgins, Ramstead, Yardley, Stephenson, etc.) 49er ushering, and on. No one could love sports more than Gran did. One seldom has such a friend – loyal, engaging, smart, fun to be with, self-effacing – just a great, decent person. Marjorie and I will miss him very much for the rest of our life.

    John Hills and Marjorie

  5. By Paul on Jan 19, 2011 | Reply

    Someone I can relate to been a fan of the 9ers sence I was young and first started watching Football, of course im a Young person compared to this guy, He is truely a Faithful 9er fan.
    RIP

  6. By Dave Whitaker on Jan 19, 2011 | Reply

    RIP fellow 49ers faithfull

  7. By ROBERT "BEETLE" BEILHARZ on Jan 20, 2011 | Reply

    HAVE A PLEASANT JOURNEY TO THE PLACE WHERE YOU WILL BE RE-UNITED WITH FAMILY FOR EVER AND START YOUR NEW LIFE. GOB BLESS

  8. By az 9ernut on Jan 21, 2011 | Reply

    GRAN WAS FAN #1 I HAVE BEEN A FAITHFUL SINCE 69′ THERE IS A DEEP LOSS IN NINER NATION YOU WILL BE MISSED …. MY MOM IS A FAITHFUL SINCE 46′ AND I MAY LOSE HER FROM AN INFECTION PRAY NINER NATION FAITHFUL THESE ARE DIEHARD FANS …..

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