Harvey Hartley died tragically in an auto accident at the end of his service the night before he would have left the Dominican Republic in 1964.
From Harvey’s Sister Pearle Burlingame:
Harvey was my brother and was in the first PC group assigned to the D.R. in 1962. He was raised on an Ohio dairy, grain farm and upon graduation from high school in 1958 was in partnership with his father and also owner/operator of a seed cleaning business for local farmers. He felt the Peace Corps would be an opportunity to help others help themselves and promote peace through this avenue rather than through war.
During Peace Corps training, he struggled learning Spanish; but, once in the field, he had the tools necessary to be successful in analyzing the needs and resources available, and communication worked out as his fellow PC volunteer was fluent in Spanish. The farmers’ cooperative he and fellow volunteer Robert Williams started was with a group of local and dedicated Dominicans. With long range planning and financial support, the co-op grew to be successful and is known as The Cooperative de Criadores del Cibao in Moca. It recently celebrated its 50th anniversary.
The co-op invited our immediate family to be their guest at their 30th anniversary celebration. It was a delight for Harvey’s father, at 90 years of age, to see the success and growth of his son’s vision through the continued dedication of the local board members through the years. The partnership with Heifer Project International helped provide animals for the co-op; and when our family visited, we saw some of the “offspring” from these animals.
Since the DR was so close to the USA, and the Peace Corps was a new program, many dignitaries would visit the volunteer projects. Sargent Shriver and his wife Eunice were frequent visitors to Moca and the press would report on their visits. Just prior to his death, Harvey had completed an agreement to have a load of pigs delivered to the DR through Heifer Project and there were several boats filled with corn, tractor parts. and a feed grinder waiting to be unloaded at Santo Domingo. Harvey had talked with Sargent Shriver the day before his death, as he had been asked to serve as Director of the Peace Corps in Columbia. Harvey told Sargent Shriver that he would accept the position.
The next day Sargent Shriver made a phone call to Harvey’s father and mother with the news of his death. The family has always felt proud of the achievements accomplished through the Peace Corps program and of the continued positive impact his program had on the Moca community.
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