Donald R. Shoemaker, 80, of Everett passed away on Friday, May 24th, 2019.
He was born Saturday, November 26th, 1938 in Imler, a son of the late Paul M. Shoemaker and Florence Ruth (Walters) Shoemaker.
He is survived by two dear friends,
Michele Munoz of Everett,
Issac Munoz of Everett, and many friends and neighbors who will miss him dearly.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in passing away by a brother Robert Allen Shoemaker.
In his younger years, Don attended Osterburg United Church of Christ and was a graduate of Kenwood Senior High School, Essex, Maryland, Class of 1957.
He then attended Oceanside Community College, Oceanside, California, graduating in 1961, and in 1964, enlisted in the United States Air Force during the Korean War, serving as a Specialist 5th Class, Meteorological Technician, observing, recording, and reporting all weather conditions to active ground troops. With an honorable discharge in 1967, Don received the Sharpshooter (Rifle) Medal, the National Defense Service Medal and the Good Conduct Medal.
After his service to his country, Don worked for the Forestry Department of California on a surveying team, laying out fire access roads, trails, campsites and helicopter pads, also fighting the June 1966 Wellman fire near San Diego that burned 93,600 acres.
In 1969, he returned to college, attending San Diego University earning his Bachelors degree with a course equivalency of a Masters degree in Mathematics. After graduation, Don moved to the Chesapeake Bay area in Maryland, working at the Aberdeen Proving Grounds analyzing weapons systems, then as a software system developer for Occupational Health Systems Development.
At that time, he and his wife Karen began their own software business, moving back to Bedford County in 1985, keeping busy with setting up at flea markets in St. Clairsville and Martinsburg and running their West Pitt Street shop in Bedford, K.C.’s Corner Shop and Shoemaker's Variety Shop.
After retiring, Don enjoyed attending estate sales, flea markets, and was a passionate photographer, building and photographing with “pinhole” cameras, a box camera without a lens, and traditional cameras, developing photos in his dark room at home. Much of his work has been displayed at the Bedford County Arts Center, the Everett Free Library, the Bicentennial Art Show and the Everett Train Station.
Since childhood, Don was interested in astronomy and was self-taught in building his own telescopes, and was founder of the Astronomers Club at the Everett Free Library, where he also taught classes in pinhole photography. With a love of nature and concern for the environment, he served as secretary for the Bedford County Conservation District, encouraging stewardship and conservation of natural resources for this and future generations.
A member of the Bloody Run Social Club, Don also enjoyed fishing, reading books from the library and his vast personal collection, and will be remembered for his giving and caring ways, sharing of his knowledge, putting the needs of others first, and just sitting on his porch, greeting and talking with his neighbors and “passers by” at his Asa Street home.
Private services will be held at a later date with burial at St. Marks Cemetery, Kimmel Township.
Memories may be shared online at www.dallavalle-everett.com with arrangements by Dalla Valle Funeral Service, Main Street, Everett.
As an expression of respect and sympathy for this great man, memorial contributions may be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Telephone 800-822-6344 or online at www.stjude.org; to the Legacy of Hope Foundation, 427 N. Tatnall St. #88261, Wilmington, DE 19801 or online at my.legacyofhopefoundation.org; or to the Wounded Warrior Project, P.O. Box 758517, Topeka, Kansas 66675-8517 or online at support.woundedwarriorproject.org.