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Obituary for George R. “Dick” DeVore, Jr.

Former owner of the now DeVore-Snyder Funeral Home and Father of Garee DeVore, Licensed Funeral Director

George R. “Dick” DeVore, Jr., age 89 of Sunbury, longtime area funeral director passed away Sunday morning, May 5, 2019 at home surrounded by his family.

He was born on December 6, 1929 in Columbus to the late George R. Sr. and Frances (Bentz) DeVore.  One of 13 class members graduating from the Galena High School in 1947, he was a proud member of their Delaware County League Basketball 46-47 Championship Team. The stories and events of his and his teammate’s exhibitions have become legendary. In 1956, he graduated from the Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science.

Following in his father’s footsteps, he became a second generation family funeral director and embalmer. He began his career serving in Galena in 1956 with his parents and the DeVore Funeral Home. In 1960 he came to the square of Sunbury and opened the second location the DeVore Funeral Home and expanded again in 1967 with opening of their Marengo chapel.

Over the years and before the current EMS system, Dick along with his associates made countless ambulance trips responding to the needs of the Sunbury community.  Whether it was a freeway accident or an expectant mother giving birth, Dick was there answering the ambulatory response.

In 1978 Dick and his wife Phyllis took a leap of faith and built a new funeral home chapel at the intersections of St Rt 3 at 61 at the edge of Sunbury. Coming to Delaware in 1985, he purchased the former Pletcher Funeral Home.  Along with this beloved wife Phyllis, son Garee; a third generation funeral director, and daughter Beth, together side by side they operated the family concern until partnering with the Snyder family of funeral homes in 1993.  As a longtime licensed funeral director, embalmer, and community steward, Dick served the needs of Delaware County families for 62 years.

He was a 60 year member of the Sparrow Lodge #400 F&AM, AASR Valley of Columbus, Shriners of North America, and the Sunbury United Methodist Church.  Dick also served the community on several boards and committees. His professional organizations include The Order of the Golden Rule funeral home affiliate as well as the National, Ohio, and Central Ohio Funeral Directors Associations. 

Ornery to his core, he was fun loving, quick witted and always engaging. Easy to befriend, he promptly provided a nick name with every encountered friendship, ones which lasted a life time. He enjoyed camping in the Mohican area, spending time at Lake Erie, and winters in Bradenton, Florida.  Dick was a fan of all sports, especially baseball and the New York Yankees.  He enjoyed coffee and the camaraderie with the patrons of Yum-Ee Donuts over the years as well as the golfing adventures experienced with his friends in the Sunbury Golf League and the breakfast club at the Hub. He also shared a love for all 5 of his poodles over the years and current poodle companion Beau.

Dick enjoyed a passion for Cadillac’s and was not only particular about his own appearance, but also those he served in his profession. With his unique charm he always made his presence known. His charisma often resulted with him becoming the center of attention.  Simply put, he loved people.

He was a gifted story teller, reminiscent of the past, and those events of days gone by; he will be remembered for always answering the call to duty in serving the needs of his community.

Those left to cherish his memory include his beloved wife and supporter through thick and thin of 50 years: Phyllis J. (Griffin), son Garee R. DeVore of Galena, daughter Elizabeth “Beth” (Don) Kaltenbach of Marblehead, Ohio, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nephew Kris Farris, loving nephew Lynn Farris, brother-in-law Dave (Laura) Griffin of CA, special care giver Tammy Reedy, and a host of friends.

In addition to his parents he was preceded in death by his sister Joan, brother-in-law Harold “Cobb” Farris, son David Durrett, as well as several loyal canines.

Friends may call from 5-8 p.m. with Masonic services at 7:45 p.m. on Wednesday at the DeVore-Snyder Funeral Home, 637 N. St. Rt. 61 at St. Rt. 3, Sunbury, where services will follow 11:00 a.m. on Thursday with Pastor Mike Mack  officiating.  Burial will then take place in Sunbury Memorial Park.

In lieu of flowers memorial contributions can be made to the Foundation for Hospice of Central Ohio, P.O. Box 430, Newark, Ohio 43058-0430.

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