John L. Mercer

27 October, 193217 May, 2024
Obituary of John L. Mercer
Hours after a visit with his three sons, John L. Mercer returned to his heavenly home on May 17, 2024. John was born to Helen and Harold Mercer on October 27, 1932, in Indianapolis. He graduated from Shortridge High School and Butler University with a degree in Business Administration. While at Butler, John was the treasurer of the Phi Delta Theta fraternity, member of the Blue Key Honor Society and President of the Young Republicans. Following college graduation, John served in the U.S. Army from 1954 – 1956 while stationed on Enewetak Atoll in the Marshall Islands. He and his fellow soldiers are known as “Atomic Veterans” because of their exposure to hydrogen bomb testing. While on Enewetak, John ordered several legal case books in preparation for his entrance to Indiana University Law School in Bloomington, Indiana. John practiced real estate and creditors rights law for 50 years, with the Indianapolis law firm, Wood, Tuohy, Gleason, Mercer and Herrin. Though much of his practice was residential foreclosure, John was well known for his compassion and earned the WRTV Channel 6 “Good Guy” award for helping families who were about to be displaced from their homes. While still in law school, John met his soul mate and love of his life, Dawn Janes Mercer. Together they lived a faith filled life, both serving as Deacons and Elders at Second Presbyterian Church, Indianapolis and as members of First Presbyterian Church in Bonita Springs, Florida. John and Dawn raised three sons, John S. (Jay) Mercer (Joan), David A. Mercer (Joy) and Daniel L. Mercer (Missy). Known as the non-camping Scout Master of Troop 440 for 10 years, John encouraged and led more than 30 young men to the rank of Eagle Scout, including his three sons. John and Dawn loved being at the lake. First at Chapman Lake and later at Lake Wawasee. John is affectionally known to his grandchildren, Eric S. Mercer, Amy L. Cimino (Joseph), Emily Mercer (Riley Dengler), Allison Mercer, Matthew Mercer and Thomas Mercer and greatgrandchildren, Kylie K. Mercer, and Margot M. Cimino, as “Chappy” in tribute to the times they spent at “the lake.” John had a special gift. When he greeted his friends, acquaintances, or co-workers he was able to amazingly recall something personal about you. Not just your name, but a fond remembrance that made you feel special. This gift endeared him to the many people he touched through his law practice, as a deacon and elder, as scout master, as member of Phi Delta Theta, and as a patient at the nursing center at Marquette Manor. Services will be held Saturday, June 8, 2024, at Second Presbyterian Church, 7700 North Meridian Street, Indianapolis, IN, 46260. Family and friends will gather from 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm, and the Service will begin at 1:00 pm. The service will be live-streamed at: In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Children,s Circle at Second Presbyterian Church. Leppert Mortuary –Nora Chapel assisting with arrangements. To share a memory or condolence, please visit

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Past Services

Saturday, 08 June, 2024


Saturday, 08 June, 2024

Celebration of Life