Professor Don's Story

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Don A. Emerson, 94, of LaVale, went home to be with the Lord on Wednesday, Jan. 17, 2018, at the Kensington Assisted Living Facility. He was preceded in death by his wife, Dorothy V. (Couter) Emerson, July 2004; and a sister, Geneva Smith.
He was born in Keyser, W.Va. on Jan. 9, 1924, to Charles Glenn Emerson and Inez M. (Rogers) Emerson. He graduated from Rowlesburg High School in Rowlesburg, W.Va. He was a U. S. Military Veteran and served in the United States Navy during World War II. Don attended Potomac State College and graduated from West Virginia University in 1949 with an M.A. in Biology and Educational Administration with postgraduate work in Ecology and Biology. Resident work was done at Western Maryland College, Claremont Graduate School, Oklahoma State University, Cornell University, New York University, Penn State University, and Oak Ridge Associated University.
He taught high school for seven years in Maryland and was a professor for 25 years at Frostburg State University. Emerson is a Professor Emeritus of biology, an honor conferred upon his retirement in 1981.
Don served on commissions for four different Governors of the State of Maryland which included Maryland Department of Water Resources and Environmental Education. He advocated and promoted the establishment of the Appalachian Environmental Laboratory located at Frostburg State University. He served on the Board of Visitors, Executive Committee, and Conservation Education Committee of the Appalachian Environmental Laboratory.
Don received many awards and citations for his service. He was presented the Good Year Conservation Award, The Allegany Soil Conservation Award and a Chesapeake Bay award presented by the Izzak Walton League of America and Dupont. He was introduced as a "living legend," a pioneer in conservation education in Maryland who placed strong emphasis on Chesapeake Bay ecology and conservation. He loved remembering field trips with his students to the Chesapeake Bay and Solomon's Island. His tireless dedication to his students and their career goals was forever present.
Don enjoyed hunting, fishing, and the great outdoors. He loved spending time with his family and friends. He was well known for his sense of humor and interesting stories.
Don was a member of the Cornerstone Baptist Church in Cumberland, the American Legion, and Ali Ghan Shriners, Rowlesburg Lodge number 165, and Scottish Rite.
Don is survived by his only child, Dian M. Williams and husband Timothy L. Williams; and granddaughter, Kathryn W. Zumbrun (Katie) and husband, Jeffrey P. Zumbrun.
The family would like to extend their gratitude and heartfelt thanks to the dedicated staff at the Kensington Assisted Living Center and the Western Maryland Hospice personnel.
Family and friends will be received at the Adams Family Funeral Home, P.A., 404 Decatur Street, Cumberland, MD, (www.AdamsFamilyFuneralHome.com) on Sunday, Jan. 21, 2018, from 2 to 5 p.m. Funeral services conducted by Pastor David G. Hattenfield will be held at the funeral home on Monday Jan. 22, 2018, at 11 a.m. Interment will immediately follow the service at Rock Gap Veterans Cemetery, 14205 Pleasant Valley Road, NE Flintstone, MD.
Military honors will be accorded at the cemetery by the Post #13 Veterans Honor Guard.
In lieu of flowers the family requests memorial contributions in the name of Don A. Emerson be made to Cornerstone Baptist Church at 930 Frederick Street, Cumberland, MD 21502.
Published on January 18, 2018
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