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Herbert Johnson Everhart,

May 1, 2015

Herbert Johnson Everhart, 65, of Kearneysville died on April 23, 2015.

Everhart was born in Martinsburg, on Feb. 28, 1950 to the late Herbert W. Everhart and Virginia Sturgis Everhart and grew up on the family farm in Kearneysville.

He is survived by a daughter, Jennifer King; a step-son, Bryan VanMetre, Jr.; a sister, Mary V. Everhart Koonce; three grandchildren, Quenton King, Jordan King, and Jada King; and a nephew, H.S. Leigh Koonce. He was preceded in death by a brother, William S. Everhart.

A graduate of Shepherdstown High School, Everhart served two tours of duty in Vietnam as a helicopter door gunner (Specialist Fourth Class) in the 269th Combat Aviation Battalion, 116th Assault Helicopter Company for the United States Army. During Herbert’s military service he received several medals and was wounded during active service.

Upon his return from military service, he owned and operated an upholstery business. His company restored furniture for many notable clients such as the National Park Service, Smithsonian Institution, and numerous embassies and government offices in Washington, D.C. Many furniture items once belonged to Presidents Ulysses S. Grant, William H. Taft, Chester A. Arthur, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson, Abraham Lincoln, William H. Harrison, and Dwight D. Eisenhower.

Everhart possessed a life-long love of agricultural pursuits. As a student, he was a member of the FFA and Evergreen 4-H Club, as well as a breeder and exhibitor of various kinds of poultry. He was also an avid fisherman and hunter. As an adult, he grew many varieties of fruit trees and hundreds of different iris cultivars. His interest culminated in beekeeping.

For 13 years, he was the owner and operator of Eversweet Apiaries, a beekeeping and honey supplier. A past president and vice president of the West Virginia Eastern Panhandle Beekeeper’s Association, Everhart served as an educator and mentor for aspiring beekeepers. He had a passion for honeybees and was devoted to educating the public about them. He was fondly referred to as the “Bee Whisperer” or “Bee Wizard.”:

In 2014, he was awarded the Bayer Bee Care Community Leadership Award. This national title was awarded to him for his countless community involvement efforts to improve bee health awareness. Herbert also helped to start the first veteran beekeepers program in the state of West Virginia and possibly the first in the U.S., the Frank W. Buckles Veteran Beekeepers Association.

The family will receive visitors at Melvin T. Strider Funeral Home on May 23 from 10 a.m. until noon.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to: Pollinator Partnership, 423 Washington St., 5th Floor, San Francisco, CA 94111, www.pollinator.org/donation_tribute.htm; or St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, St. Jude’s 501 St Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105, www.stjude.org.

Please sign the online guestbook and view his obituary at www.mtstrider.com.