Herman L. Wise
Keyser, WV – Herman L. Wise, 88, of Penny Lane, Keyser, passed away at his second home on Liberty Street on August 19, 2018 with the support of his loved ones and many friends.
He is the son of the late Loring and Gladys (Wilkens) Wise and was born on June 23, 1930 at Bean’s Grove in Hardy County, West Virginia. Herman was the last surviving member of his immediate family. He was also preceded in death by his brother, Norman Wise; sister, Hazel Haines; his wives, Gaylin Spencer and Philemena “Minnie” Wise and his son, Herman L. Wise, II.
Surviving are his many nieces and nephews. Living in this area are Robert Haines and wife Gail, Rosalee Freeman and husband Ron and Carol Rhodes and husband Lenny. In addition, Herman is survived by his last love, Rita Jean Harber and her sister, Sue, as well as, many Brother Knights of Columbus.
Herman always said, “I was born at night, but not last night. I have worked hard, played hard and know the importance of family. I have known good times and bad times and I have had a great life.” He was raised on a farm until his family moved to Keyser. As an adult, he continued to have large gardens, raise cattle, butcher livestock, smoke hams and make hay. He said, “He was a farmer at heart and all that hard work made life good." A person is best remembered by the interactions they have had with others.
Most remember Herman as a car salesman with Smith’s Ford for more than thirty years. Those who attend the KHS swinging sixties reunions, remember Herman as the proprietor of the Blue Jay and the good times of rock bands and dancing. Herman drove hard bargains with those who wanted to purchase any of his land. He was a landlord to some.
Some middle age adults will remember him as the candy man and he always had sweet treats for little ones. He helped others in various ways by listening. Without saying a word he was able to assist friends in finding a solution to their problems. This was one of his best traits. He believed you teach a man to fish, so he can be self-sufficient. He said he had tough times, but a good life and made many friends along his way.
Herman attended Keyser High School and served in the US Army. He was a member of The Church of the Assumption, where he served on the parish council and finance committees for many years. He was involved with the acquisitions of properties, equipment for the playground at St. Francis School and development and maintenance of St. Thomas Cemetery with his buddy and attorney, Joe Quinn. He was a charter member of Knights of Columbus council 10545 and sold what seems like thousands of spaghetti dinner and 300 club tickets for the Knights.
Herman and his loved ones want to thank Dr. Charles Bess and Dr. Richard Schmitt for the care provided throughout his lifetime. Also, thanks to Dr. Bess’ staff, the WVU Cancer Center at Garrett Memorial Hospital, Potomac Valley Hospital and their Hospice staff. Special thanks to Amy Ratke, R.N. who went out of her way to assist Herman and Jean. There is an art to truly caring and it is a precious gift to give.
At his request, Herman was cremated. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at the Church of the Assumption on Thursday, August 23, 2018 at 11:00am with visitation two hours prior from 9:00 – 11:00am. Inurnment will be in St. Thomas Cemetery immediately after the service with Military honors accorded by the U.S. National Army Honor Guard and Post 13 Veterans Honor Guard.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial contributions be made to the Knights of Columbus or St. Thomas Cemetery, 34 James Street, Keyser, WV 26726.
St. Thomas Cemetery
34 James Street, Keyser WV 26726
Knights of Columbus
34 James Street, Keyser WV 26726