John C. Herbst, 89

APRIL 9, 1923-FEB. 28, 2013

March 01, 2013
  • Herbst

John Christian Herbst, 89, of Misty Meadow Road in Ringgold, Md., passed away Thursday, Feb. 28, 2013, at Golden Living Center of Hagerstown. He was the last surviving member of his immediate family.

Born April 9, 1923, in Ringgold, he was the son of the late Raymond E. and Mary C. (Leather) Herbst.

He was a 1941 graduate of Smithsburg (Md.) High School.

He was a veteran of World War II, serving in the Philippines and Japan in the U.S. Army 1st Calvary Division.

He was a lifelong farmer, owner and operator of Misty Meadows Farms until turning the operation over to his son, David.

He was a lifelong member of Ringgold Church of Christ, where he served as elder, deacon, trustee, treasurer, and on several building and benevolence committees.

He was honored in 2012 for 55 years in the Grange and a lifetime member of the American Farm Bureau, where he served as county president four times and one term as Maryland Farm Bureau vice president.

Being one of the first to introduce the production of soybeans in Washington County, he was also selected to the Governor's Agricultural Hall of Fame of Maryland in 1998.

As an early environmentalist, he served as a soil conservation district director for years and was awarded the state soil and water conservation award in 1992.

The Pennsylvania Farmer Magazine and University of Maryland Cooperative Extension Service honored him with the prestigious Master Farmer award in 1981.

Investing in community service was a lifelong pursuit. He was a charter member of both the Ringgold Ruritan Club for 55 years and the Longmeadow Rotary Club. He volunteered as vice president of the Washington County Chamber of Commerce and gave of his own time on the Washington County Economic Development Commission. He served on the Board of Directors for Hagerstown Trust Bank for 24 years, served at Eastern Christian College for 10 years, served the Washington County Planning and Zoning Commission and Board of Review for 18 years, Washington County Board of Property Review, served for the Hagerstown Southern States Cooperative and also Franklin County Agway Inc.

He and his wife, Betty, entertained international trade and education delegations from Japan, China, the Philippines, Turkey and South America.

He is survived by his wife of 69 years, Betty Jane (Fager) Herbst; three sons, John Herbst of Seaford, Del., Donald Herbst and wife, Kim, of Rigby, Idaho, and David Herbst and wife, Betsy, of Ringgold; seven grandchildren; and nine great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by two sisters, Dora A. O'Toole and Louise Frey; two brothers, Daniel Elvin Herbst and Robert L. Herbst; and one daughter-in-law, Cynthia Herbst.

Services will be Monday, March 4, 2013, at 11 a.m. at Ringgold Church of Christ, with Pastor Richard Daughtridge and Pastor John Herbst officiating. Burial will be in Ringgold Cemetery.

The family will receive friends Sunday from 2 to 4 p.m. and 6 to 8 p.m. at J.L. Davis Funeral Home, Smithsburg.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Hospice of Washington County, 747 Northern Ave., Hagerstown, MD 21742 or Friends of the Rural Heritage Museum, 7313 Sharpsburg Pike, Boonsboro, MD 21713.

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