Donald Gilbert Engesser died peacefully in his sleep on February 12, 2015, at Morristown Medical Center. He was 87. Friends are invited to visit with his family at Wm. A. Bradley & Son Funeral Home, 345 Main St., Chatham, from 4 to 7 p.m. on Thursday, February 19th. A memorial service will be conducted at the Presbyterian Church of Chatham Township, 240 Southern Boulevard, at 11 a.m. on Friday, February 20th. Interment will be private.
Don Engesser was born on May 5th, 1927 in Plainfield, New Jersey, to parents August “Gus” Engesser and Ann Gray. He grew up in Westfield, N.J. and graduated from Westfield High School. After serving in the U.S. Navy, Don attended Lafayette College, where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Engineering.
While at Lafayette Mr. Engesser was a member of the Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity. Upon graduating he accepted a position at Esso (now ExxonMobil), where he worked until retiring in 1982. He also earned a Masters in Engineering from Stevens Institute of Technology and an MBA from Columbia University.
Soon after beginning his career at Exxon, Don married Sylvia Kay Stewart, also of Westfield. After marrying, they moved to Chatham Township, where they lived for 55 years and raised three children.
Mr. Engesser was a Charter member of the Presbyterian Church of Chatham Township. An accomplished woodworker, Don enjoyed working on projects in his workshop. He also enjoyed boating, fishing, golf, tennis, skiing and ornithology. A lifelong student of history, Don was also an active volunteer for the Chatham Historical Society.
Don will be remembered for his relentless optimism, enthusiasm and love of life, his thirst for adventures large and small, his kindness, his tenderness, his humility, and his bravery and strength. A man of seemingly endless energy and generosity, Don was a loyal friend and supporter to all who knew him. His ready laugh and lively spirit will never be forgotten.
Mr. Engesser was predeceased by his wife Sylvia Stewart Engesser, his older brothers Bill and Ray, and his parents. Don Engesser leaves three children: Curtis William Engesser of Newton, NJ, Ruth Dunnan of Morris Twp, NJ, and Stewart Andrew Engesser of Kennebunkport, ME. He also leaves a son-in-law, Cameron Dunnan of Morris Twp., NJ, as well as three grandchildren, Scott and Kyle Dunnan of Morris Twp. and Elsa Engesser of Kennebunkport.
In lieu of flowers, please send donations to the Presbyterian Church of Chatham Township, 240 Southern Boulevard, Chatham Township, NJ 07928.