Lawrence H. Skromme

Skromme Web

Lawrence H. Skromme, P.E., 99, an internationally renowned agricultural engineer, farmland preservationist, and antiques collector, died peacefully on Monday at home surrounded by his loving family.
Hired as Sperry New Holland’s Chief Engineer in 1951, Skromme reorganized the engineering division, separating testing and design. He pioneered using teams of design, production and service engineers working with marketing specialists to create a unique and highly efficient engineering system that earned him recognition and praise throughout the industry. Promoted to Vice President of Engineering in 1961, he oversaw global engineering for New Holland. After retirement in 1978, he became a consulting agricultural engineer for AID and the World Bank, supervising agricultural mechanization projects in developing nations.
Before working at New Holland, Skromme was a design and test engineer at Goodyear Tire and Rubber Co. and Assistant Chief Engineer at Harry Ferguson, Inc. where he designed tow-motors for aircraft carriers during World War II and then plows and implements for Ford-Ferguson tractors.
Skromme was a registered Professional Engineer and was active in many professional societies. He served as President and Fellow of the American Society of Agricultural Engineers, receiving their gold John Deere Medal in 1979. He was a member of the National Academy of Engineering, American Society of Engineering Education, International Association of Agricultural Engineers, National Society of Professional Engineers, Phi Kappa Phi and Tau Beta Pi. He served as a member of the advisory board of the U.S. Congress Committee on Science and Technology, the research advisory committee of the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, and the Engineers Joint Council, NYC.
Skromme was one of the founders of the Lancaster Farm and Home Foundation, serving as both director and president and was an officer and director of the Lancaster County Agricultural Land Preservation Board and a member of the Governor’s Commission on Agriculture and Land Preservation. He was an active member of Grandview United Methodist Church for more than 60 years.
Skromme graduated from Kelley, Iowa High School in 1931 winning an agriculture scholarship for his work in Future Farmers of America. He graduated from Iowa State University in 1937 with honors in agricultural engineering, the first of four brothers to enter the agricultural engineering field. During his college years, he worked daily on his parent’s farm, riding to classes with a neighbor and voc ag teacher.
Born in Roland, Iowa on August 26, 1913, he was the son of Austin G. and Ingeborg (Belle) Holmedal Skromme. On June 24, 1939, he married Margaret Gleason Skromme. They celebrated 73 years of marriage this year.
Surviving in addition to his wife, are three daughters; Cherlyn S. Granrose, Ph.D., Inga (Jerry) Baird Hill, Ph.D., and Hon. Karen (Anthony) Nash Sequino.; eight grandchildren; Jonathan Granrose, Karen Friend, Kristin Nicola, Beth Henderson, Caitlin Teague, Jay Nash, Wendy Moyal and Lawrence Sequino; 14 great grandchildren; and a brother, Robert Skromme. He was preceded in death by brothers Arnold and Austin Skromme and sisters Glendora, Judith Beaty and Margaret Thompson, and a granddaughter, Kathleen Granrose Rodriguez Thorne.
A Funeral Service will be held on Thursday, December 6, 2012 at 11:00 A.M. at Grandview United Methodist Church. 888 Pleasure Road, Lancaster, PA with Rev. Andrea Brown officiating. Friends may call at the church on Thursday from 10:00 A.M. until the time of the service. Interment in Bethany Lutheran Cemetery, Kelly, Iowa. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be sent to Grandview United Methodist Church, 888 Pleasure Rd, Lancaster, PA, 17601 or the Iowa State University Foundation, 2505 University Boulevard, PO Box 2230, Ames, IA, 50010.

Condolence Messages

  1. Chip and Charlee Seiple


    Our sincere condolences to you and your families. I’m sorry I never met him personally. Peace…

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