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Former Berkeley County bar owner killed in motorcycle crash

Berryhill was Korean War veteran, former truck driver

Berryhill was Korean War veteran, former truck driver

April 17, 2008|By MATTHEW UMSTEAD

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. -- In at least 60 years of riding motorcycles, the late William R. "Red" Berryhill Jr. never was much of a Harley-Davidson devotee, his son, William P. Berryhill, said Wednesday.

"Back in the day, he was a fan of the old Indians," William P. Berryhill said, two days after his 77-year-old father died in a motorcycle accident.

Indian owners didn't tend to switch to Harleys, he said.

On Monday about 3:20 p.m., Berryhill, of Glengary, W.Va., lost control of a 1978 Kawasaki motorcycle as he rounded a curve while traveling east on Apple Harvest Drive near Parkinson Drive and his Berkeley County home, according to police and his son.

The motorcycle's kickstand struck the pavement and caused Berryhill to be thrown from the vehicle and into a guardrail, West Virginia State Police First Sgt. E.D. Burnett said Wednesday in a press release.

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Berryhill died from injuries caused by the crash, Burnett said.

A former Martinsburg business owner and Korean War veteran, William R. "Red" Berryhill Jr. had left his home on the motorcycle to check the mail when the accident happened, Berryhill said.

Though sad to lose his father, Berryhill's son said his father enjoyed a generally healthy life up until the accident and the family was relieved he didn't experience lengthy suffering.

Before owning and operating the former Redee Amber Club off Rock Cliff Drive in Martinsburg, Berryhill was a truck driver and was involved in the Teamsters Union, his son said.

Circumstances in the union at one point led to Berryhill's testimony before Congress, his son said.

Berryhill said his father served in the latter years of the Korean War as part of the 83rd Reconnaissance Battalion and also was part of the Merchant Marines.

Growing up, Berryhill said he couldn't get away with much mischief because practically everybody knew his father, who was nicknamed "Red" because of his red hair.

In addition to four other children, Berryhill is survived by his wife, Dolores, and three siblings.

A memorial service will be Friday at 3 p.m. at South Berkeley Funeral Chapel in Inwood, W.Va. Burial will be private.

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