Don Everett Hershey, of Florham Park, passed away at home on May 28, 2023. He was 80.
Born in Newark, NJ to the late Priscilla and Ray Hershey. He was a 1960 graduate of Newark Academy and attended the Newark College of Engineering (NJIT) where he received a BA in Mechanical Engineering in 1964 and then attended New York Law School for a year.
In 1965, Don was hired by Grumman Aircraft Engineering as a test engineer for the lunar module program. He performed all testing on the propulsion system for Lunar Module Eagle (LM-5) which was the lunar lander of Apollo 11, the first manned mission to land humans on the moon. The Eagle was the lunar craft that brought Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin to the surface of the moon, at which time Armstrong announced, “The Eagle has landed.”
Don moved to New Jersey and began working at Federal Truck Company, which was co-owned by him, his brother Glenn, and his father Ray. Federal Truck sold many “big rigs” to businesses throughout New Jersey. Don used one of those rigs to drive guests around the neighborhood at daughter Karen’s birthday party, much to the delight of the party-goers. The neighbors may not have been as excited listening to the airhorn gleefully pulled by each new passenger!
Don had a sharp mind, and he was good at fixing things around the house. He enjoyed reading the daily newspaper and Automotive News, and due to his voracious reading habit, he was extremely knowledgeable of current events and historical information.
Don had a passion for dogs and convertibles, and he enjoyed visiting Ocean Grove where he had a beach house. He and his wife Marian were often seen driving around the streets of Ocean Grove and Florham Park with the top down and a big, beautiful collie joyfully riding in the back seat.
He was the beloved husband of Marian, the loving father of Karen and the devoted grandfather of Dakota and Lily Brookfield. He is also survived by his niece, Joy Benito.