Hoover Funeral Home & Crematory, Inc. of Hershey - Hershey
Rt. 422 & Lucy Ave. P.O. Box 475
Hershey, PA 17033
(717) 533-7700
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Richard Zimmerman

Obituary Condolences

Richard Zimmerman Obituary
Richard Zimmerman HERSHEY Richard A. Zimmerman, retired Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of The Hershey Company (Hershey Foods), died on June 29 at his home surrounded by his loving family. Mr. Zimmerman was born in Lebanon, Pa. on April 5, 1932, to the late Richard P. and Kathryn (Wilhelm) Zimmerman. He is a graduate of Lebanon High School, Class of 1949, and Penn State University, Class of 1953, with a B.A. in commerce. He served as a Lieutenant in the United States Navy on the U.S.S. Pocono, operating out of Norfolk, Va. from 1953-56. After leaving military service, he went to work at the Harrisburg National Bank and Trust Company, now Mellon Bank, as an Assistant Director. He began employment with Hershey Foods Corporation, now The Hershey Company, as an Administrative Assistant in 1958. He served in many capacities for the corporation, including Vice President, President and Chief Operating Officer, President and Chief Executive Officer, and Chairman, from which he retired in 1994. Throughout his professional career, Mr. Zimmerman held positions with several regional and national corporations. He was a Director/Trustee of the Mead Westvaco Corporation, Eastman Kodak Company, and Penn State University Board of Trustees, and served as Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the United Theological Seminary in Dayton, Ohio. He also served as Director/Trustee of the Hershey Trust Company, Milton Hershey School - Board of Managers, Dr. Pepper Company, Irving Bank Corporation and Irving Trust Company/The Bank of New York Company, Inc., Lance Inc., The Business Roundtable, Grocery Manufacturers of America, Inc., the Uniform Code Council (Chairman), the Pennsylvania Business Roundtable (Chairman), Pennsylvanians for Effective Government, National Association of Manufacturers, Pennsylvania Economic Development Partnership, Pennsylvania Chamber of Business and Industry, Penn State University Alumni Association (President), Harrisburg Area YMCA, Pennsylvania Foundation for Independent Colleges, Tri-County United Way - Harrisburg, United Way of America (Board of Governors), Hershey Public Library Endowment Trust, and the Harrisburg Symphony Association. There were numerous prestigious honors bestowed upon Mr. Zimmerman, including an Honorary Doctorate of Laws of Lebanon Valley College, the Penn State University Distinguished Alumni Award, the Penn State University Alumni Fellow Award, the Penn State College of Business Administration Alumni Award, and the National Conference of Christians and Jews Brotherhood Award. He was listed in Who's Who in America, and was a recipient of the Businessperson of the Year Award from the West Shore Chamber of Commerce and the Humanitarian of the Year Award from the United Way of the Capital Area (Harrisburg). Mr. Zimmerman was an active member of the First United Methodist Church in Hershey, the Hershey Country Club, and the Hershey Rotary Club (past president). He was a former member and President of the Management Executive Society and a member of Brownstone Lodge #666 F&AM. Mr. Zimmerman is survived by his wife of 61 years, the former Nancy Cramer; two daughters, Linda Billmyer of Hummelstown and Jan Tulli (husband Tom) of Millersville; two brothers, Edward (wife Helen) and Peter (wife Joy), both of Chambersburg; five grandchildren, Hillary Marotta (husband Fred), Adrienne Billmyer, Allyson Billmyer, Nicholas Tulli, and Matthew Tulli; two great-grandchildren, Ella and Laina Marotta; and several nephews, nieces and cousins. He was pre-deceased by an infant son, Thomas Richard. Mr. Zimmerman had a generous and philanthropic spirit and was involved in many community endeavors, such as Chair of the Hershey Centennial Committee. He was an avid golfer and sports fan and enjoyed spending time traveling and reading naval history books. In spite of Mr. Zimmerman's overwhelmingly busy schedule, his family was always his first priority. His love, wisdom, and guidance will be deeply missed by all who knew him. Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. on Thursday, July 3, in the First United Methodist Church, 64 W. Chocolate Avenue, Hershey. Visitations will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. on Wednesday, July 2, in the Hoover Funeral Home & Crematory, Inc., Hershey, and also from 9 to 10:30 a.m. on Thursday at the church. Interment will be private in the Hershey Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions are requested to: First United Methodist Church, 64 W. Chocolate Avenue, Hershey, PA 17033; United Theological Seminary, 4501 Denlinger Road, Dayton, OH 45426. Share condolences at www.hooverfuneralhome.com
Published in Lebanon Daily News on July 1, 2014
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