Donald Eugene “Gene” Berry died in his sleep Wednesday evening, July 6, at Friends Fellowship Retirement Community. He was 96 years old.
A lifelong resident of Wayne County, he worked for 37 years for Wayne Dairy, rising from a milkman, delivering door-to-door, to be manager overseeing relationships with dairy farmers.
He retired with his wife, Norma Jean (Ramey) Berry, to the small farm near Whitewater where he had grown up. The love they put into the farm, with its sweeping fields, colorful flowerbeds, and the new home they built there, was exceeded only by the love they shared for each other, and the many friends and family whose lives they touched.
Those relationships went onto sustain Gene when Norma died of cancer in August 2000.
Gene was a long and active member of West Richmond Friends Meeting. He was introduced to the Meeting by Norma. They were married there in June 1950.
He was a 1943 graduate of Whitewater High School. He attended Earlham College in 1944-45 and served in the U.S. Army from 1945-46.
He is survived by two sons, Steve, of Rockville, MD (Otilia Fernandes), and Jon, who lives in the Catskills in NY (Fara Warner); two grandchildren, Joel and Flynn; three great-grandchildren; two brothers, Robert, of Annapolis, MD, and Larry, of Whitewater; and many nieces and nephews, and their children and grandchildren, to whom he was their gentle, beloved “Uncle Gene.”
In addition to Norma, he was preceded in death by his parents, Donald and Clara Berry, and a brother, William Berry.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to West Richmond Friends Meeting and Earlham College, where Norma worked for many years.
A memorial service will be held Labor Day weekend at West Richmond Friends Meeting. Details will be forthcoming.