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Published: Saturday, 2/7/2004

Trucker had sporting goods store

Donald V. Hill, 70, a truck driver who for 23 years owned a sporting goods and military memorabilia store in Lambertville, died Wednesday of an apparent heart attack in Oakwood Hospital, Dearborn, Mich.

Family members said Mr. Hill of Washington Township was in the truck he drove for P&J Industries, traveling north on I-75 in a downriver Detroit suburb, when he began to feel ill. He got off the expressway and rolled to a stop. He was found slumped at the wheel in Lincoln Park, Mich., police there said, and was taken to the hospital.

He was an employee of P& J, an automotive plating firm, for about eight years, his wife, Nancy, said. He regularly drove a truck between Toledo and Troy, Mich.

Mr. Hill was the former owner of Don s Guns and Sporting Goods at Sterns and Secor roads from the mid-1960s until the late 1980s.

“He was very knowledgeable in antiques, especially World War II memorabilia,” his wife said.

Police officers and hunters were regular customers.

Mr. Hill was born in Adrian and he grew up on a farm near Blissfield. He was a graduate of Blissfield High School and a National Guard veteran.

He formerly worked for Toledo Municipal Court. He had been a guard for Wells Fargo and for the Metropolitan Armored Car Co.

He was an outdoorsman and he liked to fish. He and his wife went hunting together.

“We did everything together,” she said. “He was somebody who loved animals, period. He grew up on the farm, and he knew everything about animals.”

Surviving are his wife, Nancy, whom he married Nov. 11, 1985; daughter, Beth Cervola; stepsons, Michael and Robbin Shadix; brothers, Robert and Richard Hill; seven grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren.

Services will be at 3 p.m. today in the Sujkowski Mortuary, Northpointe, where the body will be after noon.

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