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Seiler Instrument Remembers the Life and Legacy of Retired CEO Eric Paul Seiler Sr.

Eric Paul Seiler Sr.
Eric Paul Seiler Sr.
ST. LOUIS, MO — Eric Paul Seiler Sr., husband, father, and retired CEO of Seiler Instrument, passed peacefully in his home on January 7, 2024 at 95 years old. Eric was born to Eric H. and Dora Seiler on March 1, 1928 in St. Louis, Missouri. He loved the mountains and being in the country. He loved Germany, traveling, playing golf, salting his food, and a good glass of wine. But most of all, he loved his family.

After returning from his first tour of duty to Japan, Eric met Elaine Doerbaum in 1948 at an ice skating rink. In his own words, he said, "I saw the most beautiful lady in an ice skating rink. She didn't know how to ice skate at all. So, I thought I would help her, and she said yes." The two were married in 1950 and spent their time together raising children, traveling the world, and playing bridge. Eric’s second tour from 1953 to 1954 was to Japan again, and this time, Elaine could join him because he was a Sergeant.

Some of their favorite trips included seeing the Sphinx in Cairo, visiting Mexico and the Caribbean on several occasions, and their many trips to Germany. As the family grew, they hosted a reunion in the Lake of the Ozarks every summer. Most recently, Eric and Elaine traveled to the Dominican Republic in February of 2023 with family and friends from the company.

During his life, Eric had many achievements. For over 50 years, he was a member of Webster Groves Presbyterian Church. He also carried his father's legacy at Seiler Instrument Company and built up the business from struggling to thriving, then wrote the company and family history in a book titled, "Precision." Outside of work, he explored his love of mountains and climbed to the base camp of Mt. Everest and summitted Longs Peak in Estes Park, Colorado. He got a hole in one on two occasions during his golf "career,” though he would be the first to tell you it was more luck than skill. For his two tours of duty in 1946 and 1953, he was given the opportunity to go on an Honor Flight with his grandson, Kurtis, as thanks for his service. He finished his service in 1955 honorably as a Staff Sergeant.

He is survived by his wife of 73 years, Elaine; their three children, Eric Jr. (Nancy), Louise (Tom), and Tom (Teri); their six grandchildren, Kurtis (Kate), Eric III (Clarissa), Nicole (David), Matt (Annie), Sam, and Tanner; and their four great-grandchildren, Theo, Autumn, Sage, and Everett. Eric is preceded in death by his mother, Dora, and his father, Eric H.

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Eric wrote the following words in his book, "Precision": “We must always be on guard for the unexpected, remembering that the only thing for certain is change itself. To be successful, we must anticipate changes and be ready for them. If we do this, we have a wonderful opportunity to leave a legacy to our children in the form of a company that thrives on vision, integrity, skill, hard work, and a spirit of service.”

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