Former Reynoldsville Fire Chief Donald E. Harriger Passes Away

Donald E. Harriger passed away Thursday, March 26, 2020, at the age of 93, at the Penn Highlands DuBois Hospital.

Born in Reynoldsville, PA, on April 23, 1926, to the late Archie and Della Mae (Anderson) Harriger. Don had five siblings; Max, Bobbie, Florence, Ruth, and Emma. Emma is the only surviving sibling. Their father died at the age of 29, leaving Della to raise the family. Don quit school in the 8th grade in order to work, at that time he fired the furnace at the Prescottville School, he continued firing the stove both morning and night. Max and Don worked several different jobs but the one they would talk about the most was picking potatoes for Verbeck Farms. Don would go into the Soldier mines to help his dad pump water out of the mine. The girls also worked various jobs to help the family.

At 17 years old Don joined the Army, 244 Field Artillery, and was in the battle of the Bulge. In 1945 he was discharged and returned home to marry Portia Yvonne Clinger of Prescottville on January 24, 1947; they were married for seventy five years.

They have two daughters; Barbara Matusky and son-in-law Jack, and Denise McGarvey and son-in-law Rick; six grandchildren; Amy Matusky; Jill (Alan) Moore, Beth (Todd) Javens, Kelly (Doug) Surkala, Rob (Kalyn) McGarvey, and a deceased grandson Eric McGarvey, Eleven great-grandchildren; Jaxson Matusky, Alex, Andrew, and Alyssa Moore, Dru, Cole, and Blake Javens, Eric and Hannah Surkala, Decker and Shaw McGarvey.

Family was everything to Don, he rarely traveled, he felt Reynoldsville had everything he wanted or needed. Don’s mind was full of stories and memories that he loved to share with others.

His interests were many but one he certainly enjoyed was building or tearing down structures. Hunting and fishing were great loves of his and after retirement he became a talented quilt designer and maker and he was a great cook. As many of you know he loved to garden from his lawn chair in his front yard and always had the first cucumbers in town.

Don worked at McClure Contractors for a few years and then him and his coworkers bought it and renamed it Glass Erectors and continued working for decades after. He was a glazier by trade, and a member of the Glaziers Union Local # 751. He loved his job and remembered every job site from start to finish.

A highlight of everyday was to meet his uncle, cousins, and friends at either the Reynoldsville Eagles or American Legion to enjoy a “Jug” and share stories. He was a member at these clubs as well as the Elks and a former Reynoldsville Fire Chief.

Don was giving of his time to family, friends, and organizations, he would help anyone in need. Don lived a very happy and full life. We are thankful to have had him as a husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, and friend. Don was dearly loved and will be missed forever.

Memorial contributions may be made in his name to the Reynoldsville Pool, PO Box 183, Reynoldsville, PA 15851, the Reynoldsville Memorial Park, PO Box 363, Reynoldsville, PA 15851 or Reynoldsville Historical Society, 45 West Main Street, Reynoldsville, PA 15851.

If you would like to receive a memorial folder/prayer card for Don, please call the funeral home at 814-653-8256 and leave your name and address with the answering service.

A public Celebration of Life will be held and announced at a later date.

Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to the Snyder – d’Argy Funeral Home, 206 E. Main Street, Reynoldsville, PA 15851.

Online condolences and other information may be found by visiting www.snyderdargy.com.


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