Elmer was born in Stouffville on January 23, 1942 and moved to Whitby in 1946. He attended Cloverlane and Almonds Public Schools. Elmer’s playing career began in 1946, first in the Whitby Minor Hockey System, then moving to the Brooklin Minor Hockey League in 1951.
In 1953-54, Elmer played for the All-Ontario Bantam and Midget Hockey Champions, then went on to the Toronto Marlborough Midget team in 1956-57. The 1959-60 season saw Elmer playing for the Whitby Hillcrests All-Ontario Junior C Hockey Champions and, in 1961-62, he was an All-Star winger with the Metro Junior A Whitby Mohawks. In 1965-66, Elmer was the top scorer with the Uxbridge Blackhawks, the Intermediate Ontario Hockey Finalists, and in 1968-69, he won the scoring title with the Lakeshore Intermediate Hockey League Whitby Melrons.
Lacrosse was also a major part of Elmer’s life as he played for the Minto Cup Finalist Whitby Redwings in 1960, the All-Ontario Junior B Lacrosse Champion Redwings in 1961 and the Minto Cup Champion Oshawa Green Gaels in 1963.
In 1964 and 1965, Elmer played with the Mann Cup Finalist Brooklin Merchants, and in 1967 with the Mann Cup Finalist Brooklin Redmen. He was 2nd Team All Star forward with the Detroit Olympics of the National Lacrosse Association in 1968 before returning to the Brooklin Redmen in 1969, where he was part of that Mann Cup winning Team.
His final notable playing accomplishment came in 1975 with the Mann Cup Finalist Brampton Excelsiors. Elmer then turned his attention to coaching lacrosse and helped guide the Whitby Warriors to the Minto Cup in both 1984 and 1985. In 2000, Elmer coached the Mann Cup Champion Brooklin Redmen.