Donald L. Merrill Sr., a lifetime resident of Waverly and son of Elmer and Louise (nee Harris) Merrill, passed away peacefully at home on June 17, 2019 at the age of 90.
He was married for 69 years to the love of his life, Carol A. (nee Shaffer) Merrill and was the loving father of five children, Susan (John) Pacanowski, Sandra (Andrew) Robinson, Patricia (Richard) Brunk, Donald Merrill Jr., and Laureen (Carmine Sesa) Merrill. He is survived by his sister Lillian Warren, and predeceased by siblings Howard, Robert, Lee and Dorothy. Don loved and took great pride in his nine grandchildren (Brian and Adam Lasater, Tracy Dozier, Kelly Medio, Kyle and Sam Ackland, Brett, Jeff and Greg Merrill) and seven great-grandchildren (Miles and Simon Dozier, Lila and Lucas Ackland, Emilia and Nolan Medio and JJ Merrill).
Don’s passion for cars began as a teenager and continued throughout his life. Buying, refurbishing and selling cars at a very early age evolved into opening Don Merrill Motors which was located on Chemung Street at the current location of the Waverly Historical Museum. After 50 years in business, he closed the doors and enjoyed a very active retirement spending time with his many hobbies, close friends, and family. He was an avid lifelong collector and enjoyed antique cars and everything associated with them, ranging from license plates to oil cans. He also loved spending countless hours working on his home, yard, and maintaining his beautiful gardens.
Don dedicated much of his life to the Village of Waverly. He was one of the longest standing members of the Waverly Rotary Club and worked on numerous area beautification initiatives, the largest of which included the renovation of 46 houses in the Valley. He was also the founder of and primary donor to the Waverly Historical Museum which was one of many ways he expressed his love of being a part of the Waverly community. He leaves this legacy to be enjoyed by all within the museum.
Don will be remembered as a dedicated, hardworking husband, father, grandfather, and community patron.
The family would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to Barb Koehn and Jeff Barber for their years of devoted friendship.
A time of calling for family and friends will be held at Blauvelt Funeral Home, 625 Broad St. in Waverly from 4-7 p.m. on Thursday, June 27, 2019.
Funeral services to honor Don will be held on Friday, June 28, 2019 at 10 a.m. at Blauvelt Funeral Home, 625 Broad St., Waverly. Private interment will follow.
In lieu of flowers, the family prefers contributions to the Waverly Historical Society in memory of Don, P.O. Box 45, Waverly, NY 14892, or visit www.waverlymuseum.org for online donations.
Those wishing to send a message of sympathy to Don’s family may visit our Facebook page or in “Obituaries” at www.blauveltfuneralhome.com.