Webster “Webb” Kremer Jr.,
the oldest of two sons of Alvin Webster and Anna Foy Kremer, was born in
Washington, DC. He grew up in nearby Arlington, VA and particularly enjoyed
visiting his relatives every summer in Winchester, VA, his father’s hometown.
Webb had a great interest in history, and Winchester was replete with that.
After graduating from Washington and Lee High School in Arlington, he entered
West Point, having received a congressional appointment from Senator Harry
Byrd of Virginia.
At West Point, Webb was remembered by his classmates as not getting anxious
about exams, taking them in stride and doing well. He was also remembered as
always being ready for physical fitness tests and passing them easily,
including the obstacle course. He was a voracious reader and especially liked
reading and learning about the American Civil War. This knowledge helped a
great deal when he worked much later on the class project at Reconciliation
Plaza, which depicts many scenes from the Civil War. Webb was also known to
play Caribbean music on his hi-fi, particularly that of Harry Belafonte. His
roommates thought this unusual, as he was from Virginia!
Webb was a member of the Debate Council and Forum, the French Club, the
Dialectic Society, the Pistol Club, the Ski Club and the Gymnastic Club while
at West Point.
While on the cow trip, Webb met his future wife, Judy, at Virginia Beach. They
discovered that they were both from Northern Virginia and had attended rival
high schools and that they had actually attended the same football games,
sitting on opposite sides! They were married after graduation and left for
Webb’s first assignment in Germany and the beginning of his career in Armor
Webb and Judy were to live many years in Europe, with four assignments in
Germany and one in SHAPE, Belgium. While living in Germany they were able to
visit almost all of the European countries. While living in Belgium they
visited many of the NATO countries and made many friends from these countries
who were stationed at SHAPE. While living in a small Belgian village they were
able to practice their French, which both had studied in school. They
particularly enjoyed their home there, a former tavern over 200 years old with
marble floors, leaded-glass windows and a large wine cellar! In their garden
they produced vegetables, some of which their Belgian neighbors had not seen.
Their years there were certainly enjoyable.
Webb attended Georgia Tech in Atlanta and received a master’s degree in
mechanical engineering and attended the Command and General Staff College at
Fort Leavenworth, KS and the Naval War College at Newport, RI as well. In
Germany, he commanded the 1st Brigade, 1st Armored Division in Illesheim and
was the chief of staff of 7th Army Training Command in Grafenwohr. His final
assignment was as the director of the Command and Staff Department of the
Armor School at Fort Knox, KY. While at Fort Knox, as well as in Atlanta and
Germany, Webb worked with the Boy Scout program and was president of the PTO
at Fort Knox High School. A Vietnam veteran, his military decorations included
three awards of the Legion of Merit and four awards of the Bronze Star.
After retiring from the Army, Webb and Judy returned to their home in Northern
Virginia with their children, Stephen Todd and Brooke Ann. Webb also obtained
another master’s degree, from George Mason University. He was a consultant for
defense contractors in Alexandria, working finally for Alion Science and
Webb was involved in community activities after retiring, including the
Crystal City-Pentagon Rotary Club and Arlington’s Faith Lutheran Church, where
he served on the church council. He served as president of the Sleepy Hollow
Woods Civic Association in Annandale and belonged to Revolutionary and Civil
War round-table discussion groups.
Webb and Judy enjoyed traveling in retirement and went back to Germany twice
while their son was stationed there with the Army. They were able to visit
places which had previously been behind the Iron Curtain that they were unable
to see before. In 2001 they celebrated their 40th anniversary in Hawaii and
again returned there in 2006 with several couples who had been good friends
from the Fort Knox days. Several months after returning from Hawaii, Webb was
diagnosed with gastro-esophageal cancer. He bravely fought this for 16 months,
refusing to be discouraged. He finally lost his battle with the disease on
September 14, 2007 and was interred in Arlington National Cemetery with full
military honors in November of that year.
Webb will always be remembered for his kindness, his loyalty, and for his love
of friends and country. How he would have loved his two young grandsons whom
he never knew! We will be certain that they learn of his bravery, his
dedication to the ideals of West Point and of his commitment to family.
— Judith Heatwole Kremer and John Fischer, roommate