Darrell D. Echelberger, 82 of Ashland, was surrounded by family as he peacefully passed away at The Good Shepherd on Wednesday January 11, 2023. He was born April 7, 1940 in Ashland County the son of F. Clifford and Thelma Hout Echelberger.
He graduated from Hayesville High School in 1958, and began working at the then State Highway Department in 1959 as a Highway Worker, and retired in 1996 as a Highway Maintenance Superintendent. Darrell was a veteran of the Air National Guard and the Army National Guard.
Darrell had many friends, and was a hard worker, enjoyed farming with his neighbors, and helping anyone in need. He was an avid woodworker, and enjoyed crafting things for family and friends, following several years of participating at area Craft Shows. He enjoyed antique furniture and wind-up/striking clocks.
He loved reading, especially John Deere related items and antique farm machinery, working word search books, especially when his grandchildren were sitting on his lap, solving them with him. As described by Emma and Sawyer he was a wonderful grandpa; as well as being a wonderful father, father-in-law, and husband.
In addition to his wife of 35 years, Becky Smetzer Echelberger, other survivors include: son Ryan (Ashley) Echelberger and Grandchildren Emma and Sawyer Echelberger of Jeromesville; and daughter LeeAnn of Hayesville. He is also survived by a special Taiwan young lady, Anya Yang, who was like a daughter—and met her when she came to Ashland University from Taiwan to study for a Master’s degree in English; and several friends, cousins, nieces and nephews; along with many other Taiwan friends, many who were like family. Anya was able to be with Darrell upon his passing.
After retiring, Darrell enjoyed volunteering at the Ashland Senior Citizen Center where he served several years on The Board of Trustees, and as the building and grounds leader, though his love of caning chairs for the past 23 years was his greatest passion.
In 2004, Darrell and Becky received a Certificate of Appreciation from The International Student Services Offices at Ashland University for showing friendship and hospitality to international students for many years; Darrell and Becky were awarded the Outstanding Senior Citizen of Ashland County in 2008.
He was preceded in death by her parents, grandparents, and brothers Gene, Dale and Dick.
A Celebration of Life will be held in the Spring of the year.
Memorial contributions – Ashland Senior Citizen Center or organization of individuals’ choice.
Fickes Funeral Home in Jeromesville assisted the family with arrangements.
Online condolences may be made at www.fickesfuneralhome.com.
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