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Saturday, August 17, 2013

Donald McGowan Herzog, 88, of Naples, FL, A Smethport, PA Native

Donald McGowan Herzog
Donald McGowan Herzog, 88, of Naples, FL, and summer residence at Chautauqua, NY, a Smethport, PA, native, entered Heaven on Aug. 13, 2013, after loving home Hospice care.

He was the son of the late Ralph W. and Emogene Herzog of Smethport, Pa. It is said that his father was so pleased to have his first son that he gave the doctor a bonus.

During the period of World War II, Don matriculated early from high school and completed Pennsylvania State College (now University), graduating in less than three years in mechanical engineering. He was president of Phi Delta Theta Fraternity, of which he had many fond memories. He served as an engineer for Carrier Corporation in Syracuse, Charlotte and Philadelphia before being promoted to branch manager of the Florida office during the introduction of home air conditioning. Within three years his office was the No.1 sales office for Carrier USA.

Don said jokingly that the best sales job of his life was meeting and marrying his bride of 63 years while working in Florida. He married Kathryn (Kitty) Arnold Herzog of Groveland, Fla., in 1950. Later that year, Don joined his father at the R.W. Herzog Company in Smethport, manufacturing mica insulators for vacuum tubes. Soon they transitioned into the family business of more than 35 years, Smethport Specialty Company. It became a leading private manufacturer of magnetic toys and games sold throughout the USA and five continents.

Don felt very strongly about community leadership. He was a founding member and president of the Smethport Lions Club, president of the Smethport School Board, active in the United Methodist Church, and 50-year member of the Smethport Country Club.

He regularly enjoyed bridge, motor boating, hiking, skiing, bicycling, golfing and the Wellness Center. Don was known as a tall, handsome, personable and decisive gentleman. His lifelong fitness habits and positive attitude helped him overcome a series of health challenges in his later years.

The Herzogs traveled often to Florida to visit his wife's family. In middle age they bought a condo at Wilderness Country Club in Naples. Don thought the view was the most lovely he had ever seen and he wanted to remain there until the end of his life. He and Kitty vacationed at Chautauqua Institution for more than 50 years, spending many summers at their daughter's family home.

Don and Kitty celebrated their 50th anniversary in 2000 with a family pilgrimage to the Holy Land.

Don is survived by his devoted Christian wife of 63 years, Kathryn; and three daughters: Emogene Bedrosian, Md. (Gary, Ph.D.) of Chautauqua, N.Y., Frances Lucille Herzog of Smethport, Pa., and Kathryn Ann Probst, R.N. (Andrew) of State College, Pa. In addition he leaves his brother, James R. Herzog of Smethport, Pa.; five grandsons; one grand-daughter; and four great-grand-children.

The family would like to thank the staff of Avow Hospice, First Baptist Church of Naples, Dr. Ronald Garry, Dr. Daniel Morris, Nurse Manager Anne Lashenka, their entire medical team and household helpers for their devoted care over the past several years.

Memorial donations may be sent to First Baptist Church of Naples designated for the Community Outreach Evangelism (CORE) program, at 3000 Orange Blossom Drive, Naples, FL 34109.

Arrangements are with Hodges Funeral Home in Naples. Visitation will be on Aug. 23 from 4-6 p.m. at Hodges on Immokolee Road. Funeral services and a gathering for refreshments will occur at First Baptist Church of Naples at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Aug. 24, 2013.

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