Harold V. Fergus, Jr., 75, of Washington died Sunday August 28, 2016 at 7:55AM at his home.
He was born February 16, 1941 in Washington, Pennsylvania, son of the late Judge Harold V. Fergus and Sara Ann Van Kirk Fergus.
Mr. Fergus graduated from East Washington High School in 1958, Middlebury College (A.B.) in 1962, Pitt Law School (J.D.) in 1965.
On June 14, 1963 he married Jane Stevenson Fergus, who he met at Middlebury, who survives.
Also surviving are sons Allan Harold (Andrea) Fergus of Winchester, Virginia; Matthew Christopher Fergus of Pittsburgh; Stevenson Van Kirk Fergus of Kingston, Ontario; and Nathan Edward (Melanie) Fergus of Gig Harbor, Washington; grandchildren Sara, Abigail, Mackenzie and Andrew of Winchester; Kaley, Ryan, and Carter of Gig Harbor; and his brother Scott Fergus (Mundy) of Washington.
He served in active duty as a Captain in the U.S. Army at Fort Bliss, Texas, from 1966 to 1968.
Mr. Fergus practiced law in Washington County for over 50 years with his brother Scott and late father with the practice Fergus, Martin and Fergus. He actively practiced until his recent illness in 2016. In addition to his private practice, he was a highly regarded figure in Pennsylvania worker’s compensation law.
He was an appellate judge on the Worker’s Compensation Appeal Board for over 40 years, including serving as chairman for many years. In 2004, he was honored with the Irvin Stander Award in Workers’ Compensation. This award recognizes the member of who “has excelled in the practice of law, whose dedication to his or her clients, professionalism, and regard for colleagues serves as an example to others, and who embodies the principle of striving mightily while treating colleagues and judges as friends.”
Mr. Fergus was a longtime active local politician. He served as Mayor of East Washington from 1972 to 1996, and was a delegate to every Republican National Convention from 1976 to 1996. He was featured in a Charles Kuralt story on CBS national news as the “last liberal in the Republican Party”. He was a proud Republican until 2008, when he became a supporter of President Obama due to his longstanding support of racial equality and justice. He proudly switched registration to the Democratic Party in 2012 in support of his belief in LGBT rights and equality.
He was also an accomplished actor, performing numerous roles in local community theater, including Washington Community Theater and Little Lake Dinner Theater. He was awarded the 2010 Will Disney Award by Little Lake, where he appeared in over 40 productions and served on the Board. In recent years he travelled annually to Valdez, Alaska, to perform with the Last Frontier Theater Conference.
Mr. Fergus was also an avid world traveller, theatergoer, and gourmand. He and his wife travelled to every continent except Australia. Highlights of his travels included eating Peking duck in mainland China, viewing over 1000 theater productions in New York and London, and joining in a small ship expedition to Antarctica.
He was well liked in the community and will be remembered for his good sense of humor and his character.
Friends will be received on Wednesday August 31st from 2-4 & 6-9 P.M. in the Warco-Falvo Funeral Home, Inc, Wilson at East Katherine Avenues, Washington; S. Timothy Warco, Supervisor/Director, Susan Falvo-Warco Director, S. Timothy Warco II, Director. A funeral service will be held on September the 1st at 11 A.M. in the funeral home with Reverend Dr. Robert J. Campbell officiating. Burial will follow in Washington Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to Last Frontier Theater Conference, Prince William Sound Community College, Valdez, AK, http://greenandgold.uaa.alaska.edu/give/lftc/ or the Washington County Gay Straight Alliance Inc., 390 Sanitarium Road, Washington, PA 15301, http://www.wcgsa.org/donate/.
Online condolences may be expressed at www.warcofalvofuneralhome.com.