MEREDITH — Donald P. Merseles Sr., age 82, passed peacefully at home, surrounded by loved ones, on Aug. 11, 2019, after a period of declining health.
Born Feb. 28, 1937, in Staten Island, New York, to the late Mason and Evelyn (Robb) Merseles, Don graduated from high school in 1955 and immediately joined the Coast Guard, where he was able to travel to Newfoundland and Guantanamo Bay. He retired from the Coast Guard in 1959, and shortly after, he joined the crew at Con. Edison.
Don was happily married to the love of his life, Gail (Ruggles) Merseles, for 52 years, until her passing in 2015. They spent the first 12 years together in Staten Island until moving to Edison, New Jersey, for 26 years. Don was a hardworking man, always providing for his family, and during the summers, Gail and Don would travel with their family in a camper to various destinations in New Hampshire and other states.
After retiring from Con. Edison, Don and Gail were finally able to move to the place they always called home, Meredith, New Hampshire.
He spent his retirement days collecting and building model trains. He was an avid historian, always willing to give you a history lesson. He loved gardening with his wife and taking long car rides to the mountains. He enjoyed sitting by a fire with family and friends and enjoying a nice glass of wine.
Don had a stern yet loving nature about him, except for when the grandchildren came around. He had such a soft spot for his grandchildren and would often become a practical jokester. He would leave you with a belly ache from laughter and tears in your eyes. If you couldn’t find Don, one could find him sitting around the table waiting for his apple pie or out in the yard enjoying the beautiful day.
He will be most remembered for his great sense of humor, his great hair, and his contagious smile and laughter.
Don was predeceased by his wife, Gail (Ruggles) Merseles; his parents, Mason and Evelyn (Robb) Merseles; and his sister-in-law, Joan Merseles.
Don is survived by his brother, Roy Merseles, of North Carolina; his daughter, Dianne Caggiano, and her husband, Ralph, of Florida; his son, Donald Merseles Jr., and his wife, Lisa, of New Jersey; his son, Gregg Merseles, and his wife, Lydia, of New Jersey; and his daughter, Debra Swingle, and her husband, Gene, of Meredith. He is also survived by 13 grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.
There will be a celebration of life in Don’s honor for anyone who wishes to join the family on Sunday, Aug. 18, at Hart’s Turkey Farm Restaurant on Route 3 in Meredith, from 4 to 7 p.m.
A special thank-you to Mayhew Funeral Home for helping with the arrangements.
In lieu of flowers, donations in Don’s memory may also be made to the American Cancer Society.
To leave an online condolence, please visit www.mayhewfuneralhomes.com.