John W. DeMotte a leading Brookville business and community leader for a half century, passed away peacefully at his home at 168 Euclid Ave., Brookville, on Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2014, at the age of 85.
He was born on Oct. 16, 1928, at his parents’ home on Euclid Avenue in Brookville.
The son of the late Arthur C. DeMotte and Gertrude Carberry DeMotte, he is survived by his wife of 64 years, Esther M. (Harding) DeMotte.
Also surviving John are his daughters, Sharon K. Goldsmith and husband Rick Goldsmith of Franklin, Pa., and Darlene S. DeMotte of Brookville; and son Jack DeMotte and wife Sheila M. DeMotte of Brookville; along with five grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren, and several nieces and nephews.
John was preceded in death by three brothers, Albert (Cuffy), Bill and Paul DeMotte; and four sisters, Anna Connors, Helen Shields, Mary McGrane and Virginia Bish.
John DeMotte began his career as a meat-cutter for Russie’s Supermarket in Brookville while in high school.
In early 1940s, he began selling Prudential life insurance and was promoted to district manager in the Pittsburgh region in 1957.
In 1960, he purchased Sterck’s Newsstand in Brookville and opened DeMans.
Over the years, DeMans has served Brookville as a newsstand, gift shop, and, most recently, as a regional distributor of athletic team sporting goods.
John also started and operated SueAnne’s, later to be Jode’s dress shop, and Village Shoes family shoe store.
John was very active in his community life and service.
He was a member of Hobah Lodge No. 276 F&AM, Brookville, and a 32nd degree Mason at the Coudersport Consistory, and he was a member of the Altoona Jaffa Shriners.
He was active as a trustee at the First Baptist Church in Brookville, and served several years as president of the Brookville Borough Council and for many years as chairman of the Brookville Municipal Authority.
Always vitally interested in the well-being of his community, he was a founding member of Historic Brookville, Inc., and served on the board of directors of the Brookville Hospital.
He was honored by his hometown with the receipt of the Dr. Walter Dick Memorial Award and also enjoyed his time with the Brookville Lions Club and the Brookville Community Club.
His civic service extended far beyond his local community, as he served several years as a board member and a term as president of the Pennsylvania Municipal Authorities Association (PMAA) and received that organization’s highest honor, the Sahli Award, for service to municipal authorities across the Commonwealth.
He was also affiliated with several business and trade associations and boards such as the S&T Bank Advisory Board, Team Athletic Goods and the National Sporting Goods Association.
Visitation will be at the McKinney Funeral Home at 345 Main St.,
Brookville, from 6 to 8 p.m. Saturday, Feb, 1, 2014, with a Masonic Funeral Service to be held at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday night.
Visitation will also be held from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 2, 2014, and from 8 to 10 a.m. Monday, Feb. 3, 2014.
The funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. Monday, Feb. 3, 2014, at the First Baptist Church at 101 Main St., Brookville, with the Rev. David Borger officiating.
Interment will follow immediately at the Brookville Cemetery.
The family suggests donating to the following organizations or to the charity of the donor’s choice for memorial gifts: First Baptist Church, 101 Main St., Brookville, PA 15825; Brookville Hospital, 100 Hospital Rd., Brookville, PA 15825; or Brookville YMCA, 125 Main St., Brookville, PA 15825.