Harry George Merker III of Hernando, Florida died unexpectedly in Moffitt Hospital in Tampa, FL on November 17th, 2019 at the age of 70. He is survived by his wife Terri Merker, his son Christopher Merker, his daughter Kelly Merker, and grandchildren Brandon Shupe, Sofia Merker, Madison Ventigli and Gabrielle Merker. He was preceded in death by his parents Harry George Merker ll and Violet Merker, and his son Harry Merker IV. He leaves behind many close friends including Steve and Beth Forren, their children Sierra, Gracie, Aidan and Jossalin; Andrew and Maggi Sutherland; Mike and Melody Villarini. He was fortunate to have many friends from his Conrail and Norfolk Southern days in both the FOP and the PCC.
He was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on August 8th, 1949 to Harry and Violet Merker. He graduated from Woodrow Wilson High School (now Truman) in Philadelphia in 1967. Harry loved growing up in the city. He married Deborah Moore (Muth), with whom he had three children. Harry joined the Air Force in April 1969 and was honorably discharged as a staff sergeant in the fire protection services in 1976. He was stationed in Aviano AFB, Italy; in McChord AFB, Washington and his last station was Dover AFB, Delaware. Conrail hired him as a Railroad police officer after graduating from the Pennsylvania State Police academy in November of 1976. Norfolk Southern Railroad merged with Conrail in 1999, and he relocated to Roanoke Virginia with his wife Terri Merker, who he married in 1998. In 2009 Norfolk Southern again relocated him to Atlanta, Georgia. He retired from the railroad in 2011. In 2018 he moved to Hernando, Florida.
He gained many very dear friends from his time in Conrail and Norfolk Southern Railroad. Harry often reminisced about his military days and loved his time on the streets working as a railroad police officer. He deeply missed Joe (Anne)McGinty, with whom he spent so many nights working in Camden. He truly enjoyed living and working in Roanoke, a time when he made many great new friends. In Atlanta many of those friends became like family. He loved old cars, especially Corvettes and Mustangs. He loved his Philadelphia sports teams, especially the Phillies and Eagles. And he loved his Sailor Jerry. But most of all he loved his family.
Harry’s wishes were to be cremated, and his ashes scattered to the sea. As many who loved Harry are located across the country. His wife invites you to make donations to a military charity of your choice in lieu of flowers, such as The Gary Sinise Fund or the DAV. He also liked many first responders’ charities such as the Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation
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