Asbury United Methodist Church, Cinnaminson, NJ
Sunday, March 26, 2023

Asbury Veteran: Edward ("Ed") W. Scharr

Army veteran...

Ed Scharr grew up in the Cramer Hill section of Camden, NJ.   He enlisted in the Army before graduating from Woodrow Wilson High School in 1955. Immediately following graduation he was called to report for basic training at Fort Dix, NJ. After eight weeks Basic Training Ed volunteered for the Paratroopers in the 82nd Airborne. This entailed sixteen more weeks of training.

The men in the Airborne made jumping out of airplanes look really easy, but it isn’t. One time when Ed was getting ready to jump, the Master Sergeant decided he was hesitating a little too long and booted him right out of the plane. Ed didn’t make an elegant jump but that doesn’t matter in the service. He landed wrong, resulting in a broken arm, and was in recovery for about eight weeks. He then volunteered for overseas duty.
Ed traveled on many different ships before landing in Korea. While on a ship traveling from South Carolina to Florida and then to New York, another enlisted man, Elvis Presley, entertained on the ship. This was quite exciting!
Ed served thirteen months in Korea at the 38th Parallel. His best friend was shot by a North Korean while on guard duty. This was a very devastating experience for Ed and one that he will never forget. Shortly after this experience, Ed’s step-father passed away and he was flown home for the funeral. Then it was back to finish his tour.
Ed loved the service and planned to make it his career. Unfortunately, his step-father’s death put a hardship on his mother and his nine brothers and sisters. He needed to return home to help support his family. He was discharged as a Staff Sergeant.
At home he worked two jobs---full-time at Keystone Millwork in Pennsauken and, at night, part-time at Addresses Incorporated. While working his night job, a woman called Ed and his coworkers each day for ten years to remind them of their starting times at work that night. One day Ed had to see this girl who called him. He took one look and said, “That’s the one for me!” He made a date a told her all about himself. Betti’s family welcomed him and they were married in 1969. They have a son, Troy.

After coming to Asbury, the men of the church had a retreat at the home of Bob Moss where Ed and Bill Smith realized they grew up in the same neighborhood. They talked all night and had a great time reminiscing about old times. You can ask Bill the details about growing up with the Scharr Boys!