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Herbert H. Neufeld


1931 - 2015 Obituary
Herbert H. Neufeld Obituary
Herb Neufeld passed away Dec. 11, 2015. He was the youngest of 12 children, 10 boys and 2 girls. His parents, Jacob and Helena (Giesbrecht) Neufeld, were born and raised in Ukraine, Russia, and all of the children except Herb who was born 3 months after the family arrived in the U.S., were born in Siberia. The family experienced many challenging and difficult times while trying to live their private and religious lives as Mennonites in a strife-torn country under Communist rule. In 1996, Herb wrote a book entitled "Jacob's Journey," chronicling the family's hardships in emigrating to America.
Herb was born in Shafter, CA, later moving to Madera, CA. He was extremely proud of his 6 brothers who entered the U.S. Army during World War II. He and his mother moved to Bakersfield where Herb graduated from East Bakersfield High School in 1949. Herb won an appointment to West Point Military Academy but chose to stay in Bakersfield to marry Joyce Woodside, also a graduate of East High.
Herb continued his education while working full-time â€" 2 years at Bakersfield College and 2 years at Fresno State, all the while earning straight A's. He began his teaching career for Bakersfield City School District and after earning his Master's Degree, he began counseling. In 1963, he began teaching U.S. History, Government, and Economics at Shafter High School. He then became Assistant Principal at Foothill High School and in 1972 he was hired as Director of Instructional Materials for the Kern High School District. Even though he was the only child in his family to graduate from high school, he earned his doctorate in School Administration from Brigham Young University in 1974. He was appointed Principal of Shafter High School in 1983 and retired in 1993.
Herb was President of the Assn. of California School Administrators and President of Bakersfield's Chapter of Phi Delta Kappa, an educational organization. He was a member of Kiwanis from 1965 to the present, where he served as President of the Westchester Club 1976-1977 and then as the Lt. Gov., Div. 33, representing the Shafter Club.
Herb loved to sing and direct music and participated in many choirs and quartets as well as always singing and playing the piano at home and even sang while driving.
Herb was preceded in death by his parents, Jacob and Helena, sisters Marie and Helen, brothers Jake, Corney, John, Henry, Frank, Bill, Dave, Abe and Herman, and wife of 65 years, Joyce. He is survived by his daughter, Patti Bailey (Mike), son Mike of Bakersfield, son Scott (Melinda) of Bakersfield, grandson Steven (Doris) of Fullerton and grandson Ryan of Ashland, OR.
Herb will always be remembered as a kind and compassionate man and a gentleman in every sense of the word.
A memorial service will be held Saturday, Jan. 9th at 11:00 a.m. at First Assembly of God, where he was a member, 4901 California Ave. Bakersfield. His dear friend, Pastor Roger Norwood, will officiate.
Published in Bakersfield Californian on Dec. 20, 2015
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