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Dr. Darwin Everett Gearhart

December 31, 1938 - December 2, 2020

Dr. Darwin Everett Gearhart, 81, of Shawnee Hills, Belleville, died Dec. 2, 2020 at the Geisinger-Lewistown Hospital of complications with COVID-19.

He was born Dec. 31, 1938, in McVeytown, the son of Jessie (Laughlin) Gearhart Witzel and Donald E. Gearhart. Surviving are brothers and sisters; Marvin Earl Gearhart and wife Donna, of Dillsburg, Martha Faye Richard and husband David Jr., of Lakeland, Fla., Miriam Ann Jury and husband Robert, of York, and David Lee Witzel and wife Rosemary, of McAlisterville. He is also survived by nieces, nephews and close cousins, as well as his good friend, Lamar Peight.

Dr. Gearhart loved education and graduated from a number of colleges and universities with various degrees, including a doctorate of Theology and a doctorate in Mortuary Science. He retired from teaching at his last teaching assignment at Miami-Dade University, Miami, Florida as head of the Mortuary Science department.

Darwin was a very caring man who tried to make life easier for others. He was a caretaker for his mother until she died in 2014. He held parties at his home for Sunday school classes, family and friend’s birthdays, and celebrated Christmas with youth groups who came to his home to sing.

Darwin loved to travel and had visited many countries around the world as well as many states in the United States. He always had his mother along for trips as they camped various places. When he was no longer able to drive long distances, he employed his friend, Lamar Peight, to drive to the Pacific coast and back to Pennsylvania, stopping at numerous sites he had preplanned, as well as other places he wanted to visit.

When he and his mother were able, they attended the Spring Run Church of the Brethren, McVeytown.

His services will be private and at the convenience of his family. Burial will take place at Spring Run Cemetery in McVeytown with Pastor Kate Gandy officiating.

Arrangements are under the care of Henderson Funeral Home, Belleville. Online condolences may be offered at

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May 13, 2021

My Condolences to Family and Friends of my College Professor and Friend.

Darwin and I met way back in the very early 60s at a school near Port Allegheny when I was in primary, I met him years later again as the Head of the Faculty at MDCC Mortuary Science , then as my teacher.

I can say this man would go out of his way for anyone that needed assistance, and over the years the visits became less as age slowed us down, but my friend Darwin was always there.

Darwin was a intellectual individual, and when you had a question no matter what it pertained to he always had a precise well spoken answer back with knowledge, no…


Dec 06, 2020

You have our deepest sympathy at this sad time. We met in Florida for the first time even though we were related with his mother from Pa. Donna Coulter Sunderland.


William Hoenstine
William Hoenstine
Dec 03, 2020

It's with sincere condolence that I write this memorial message for my old friend Darwin. Our friendship began many decades ago, back in the late 1950's to be precise. Darwin and I were avid citizens band (CB) radio operators; that's exactly how we met - on the air conversations. After that we formed a very tight bond while I completed high school in Lewistown. By that time (1966) Darwin had accepted a position with the department of mortuary science at the Miami-Dade Community College, Miami, FL. He moved there sometime before I graduated from high school so our tight friendship bond was a bit strained due to the vast distance between us until late 1966 when I married Paula…

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