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Student had found calling

September 05, 2000

Student had found calling



By KIMBERLY YAKOWSKI / Staff Writer


HALFWAY - A Washington County man who died in a traffic accident Saturday morning was remembered by his family as a strong-willed, caring person with a gift for art.

Daryl Paul Earnest, 22, of Halfway, died in Arlington, Va., when his car struck another vehicle, sending it crashing into a nearby Econo Lodge at 2:15 a.m., Arlington County Police said.

He was the son of Larry P. and Kathleen Kircher Earnest of Halfway. He is also survived by a brother, Brennan Earnest, 20, of Halfway.

He was a 1996 graduate of South Hagerstown High School. After a brief stint at college and several jobs, Daryl Earnest had found his long-time talent for art was to be his future career, his father, Larry Earnest, said.

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His son had registered full time at Hagerstown Community College and had started art classes just before the Labor Day weekend.

"He always liked art. He considered it was a gift to him from God," said Larry Earnest.

Daryl Earnest made the trip to Arlington, Va., to visit some clubs that played the techno music he enjoyed, his father said.

He had considered the jaunt a last chance to kick back and have fun before settling in for the school year, said Larry Earnest.

A talented athlete, Daryl Earnest played soccer and lacrosse at South Hagerstown High School. He didn't play basketball, even though many thought he should because he was 6 feet, 3 inches tall, his father said.

Larry Earnest said he had found his son had matured in recent months and was embracing his spirituality along with his newfound interest in school.

A natural leader, Daryl Earnest never shied away from hard work, his father said.

While in high school, Daryl spent countless hours doing research for "One Surgeon's Private War" a book on the Civil War that was written by John Priest, a South Hagerstown High School history teacher.

"He was very enthusiastic about it and pitched right in," said Priest of the school project.

It was through Daryl's thorough research that he was able to include a surgeon's vivid account of treating a 16-year-old soldier who had massive facial injuries, he said.

"He was a remarkable individual - a joy to be around," said Priest.

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