Alan Fertenbaugh, Groff Operations Manager, Dies at 45

Thu July 03, 2008 - Northeast Edition
CEG



Alan Wayne Fertenbaugh, operations manager of Groff Tractor & Equipment in Ephrata, Pa., died unexpectedly on June 10, 2008, at age 45. Fertenbaugh lived in Clay Township, Pa., with his wife, Marian Peters Fertenbaugh and two children, Benjamin L. and Grace M. Fertenbaugh.

Ken Groff, chairman of Groff Tractor & Equipment, said Fertenbaugh will be remembered for his work ethic, resourcefulness, loyalty and reliability.

“He was always a very positive person and his ’can do’ attitude permeated throughout the organization,” Groff said.

Mike Savastio, president and CEO of Groff Tractor & Equipment, said the thing that stood out the most about Fertenbaugh was his “passion to solve problems and take care of customers. … He leaves behind a legacy that has set the bar very high for all future managers in this industry to try and emulate how to take care of a customer. I don’t know if I’ll ever have another manager like him and I feel very fortunate to be able to say that I worked with him.”

Fertenbaugh was born in Mechanicsburg, Pa., the son of Cecilia Frye Fertenbaugh and the late William Fertenbaugh.

He graduated from Mechanicsburg High School and Cumberland Perry Vo-Tech and then began a career as a light equipment technician at Groff Tractor & Equipment in 1981.

“He was one of the most gifted mechanics I’ve ever known,” said Groff. “His ability to diagnose and repair anything was unmatched.”

In 1987, Fertenbaugh moved to Groff’s Ephrata branch and became the service manager.

“It became obvious that as good as he was as a mechanic he was even better as a manager,” Groff said.

Fertenbaugh’s commitment to solving customers’ problems served him well and he developed a loyal following, continuously growing the operations and providing positive financial results for the company.

“The fact that Groff Tractor was the only company he ever worked for is a very unique attribute these days and is a testament to his loyalty and commitment,” said Groff.

Fertenbaugh enjoyed being with his family and also enjoyed working around the house, being outdoors, remodeling and being a mason. He was a member of Ephrata Blue Lodge No. 665 Free and Accepted Masons and Lancaster Lodge of Perfection.

“He will be sorely missed as a leader, employee, friend and example of what it means to be a ’team player’,” said Groff.

Surviving in addition to his wife, mother and children are his two brothers, William L., husband of Joni Fertenbaugh of Camp Hill, Pa.; and Russell W., husband of Annette Fertenbaugh of Mechanicsburg, Pa.; and a sister, Cindy A. Weitkamp of Dillsburg, Pa.

He was preceded in death by his father, William.

The funeral service was held at the Hopeland United Methodist Church with Pastor Dennis Snovel officiating. Burial followed in the Chestnut Hill Cemetery in Mechanicsburg, Pa.

Memorial contributions in Fertenbaugh’s memory can be made at any PNC bank branch location to The Alan Fertenbaugh Memorial Fund.

Contributions also can be sent to:

The Alan Fertenbaugh Memorial Fund

C/O Katie Reed

Groff Tractor & Equipment, Inc.

6779 Carlisle Pike

Mechanicsburg, PA 17050

For additional information or to send a condolence to the family, visit www.stradlingfuneralhome.com.