Russell L. Gresh Jr., 83, of Hutchinson Island, FL, formerly of Pottstown, PA, died Monday, January 12, 2015 in Jensen Beach, FL.
He was the husband of the late Harriet M. (Gilbert) Gresh, who died in 1996.
Born in Greshville, PA of proud Pennsylvania Dutch heritage to the late Russell T. Gresh and Marie (Wagner) Gresh, "Junior" began his life as a produce farmer, leaving school to help support his family after graduating from the 8th grade.
He learned how to build houses by hand from his father, constructing dozens of homes in the Boyertown and Pottstown area. This led to his startup of D&B Construction Co., which specialized in curb construction.
Russell was blessed with an astute business sense and was involved in many ventures, but is best known for founding D&B Kitchens in 1961 (later known as Dutch Built Custom Crafted Cabinetry).
Along with his brother-in-law, Carl and many dedicated craftsmen, he built his company into a nationally recognized custom cabinet manufacturer, with over 200 custom kitchen dealers throughout the United States. D&B kitchens were shipped internationally to Bermuda, Germany, Antigua, Mexico and Canada.
Russell was extremely proud of being invited to display his cabinetry for over 10 years in the prestigious Architectural Building on Park Avenue in New York City, as well as having a kitchen featured in "Home and Gardens 1001 Home Decorating Ideas."
Russell was an avid golfer and a member of Brookside Country Club for many years. He was also a member of the Elks Club.
A self-proclaimed "snowbird," he spent the majority of winters in Florida with his beautiful wife and family, escaping the cold Pennsylvania weather to enjoy his oceanfront condo.
He was a member of the Island Dunes Country Club and Yacht Club, where he enjoyed golfing, boating and fishing.
He is survived by all 7 of his "D&B" children: Doreen Duncan (wife of Dr. David) of Boyertown, Dale Gresh (husband of Susanne) of Reading, Barry Gresh (husband of Cecelia) of Pottstown, Bruce Gresh of Timber Pines, FL, Beverly Uhrig (wife of Timothy) of Pottstown, Darla Gresh of Orlando, FL and Debbi Rodgers of St. Pete Beach, FL. He was a proud grandfather to 9 grandchildren: Brian and Craig Duncan, Katy Gresh, Adam and Benjamin Gresh, Emily (Uhrig) Murphy, Matthew Uhrig, Julien and Breonna Rodgers and 3 great-grandchildren: Waverleigh Duncan, Aiden and Ryan Murphy.
He is also survived by brothers, Robert Gresh (husband of the late Doris) of Boyertown and Timothy Gresh of Hobe Sound, FL.
He is predeceased by sister, Margaret Erb (wife of Harry) and sister, Shirley Hagenbuch (wife of the late Carl).
Russell often described his life by borrowing lyrics from his favorite singer, Frank Sinatra, "I've loved, I've laughed and cried, I've had my fill, my share of losing. And now, as tears subside, I find it all so amusing. To think I did all that, and may I say, not in a shy way. Oh, no, oh no not me, I did it my way."
A funeral service will be Tuesday, Jan. 20, 3:30 p.m. at First Presbyterian Church, 750 N. Evans Street, Pottstown with Revs. Karen Pidcock-Lester and W. Carter Lester officiating. Visitation will be Tuesday, Jan. 20 from 2:00 p.m. to 3:15 p.m. at the church. Entombment in Highland Memorial Park Mausoleum will be private.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to your choice of charity in memory of "Russell and Harriet Gresh.Add to My Saved Tributes