Donald G. Uhlenburg, 74, of Malvern, co-owner of the Donovan Heat Treating Co. in Northeast Philadelphia, died of Parkinson's disease last Monday at the Neighborhood Hospice in West Chester.
Born in Pittsburgh, he graduated from what is now North Hills Senior High School there in 1952 and earned a degree in metallurgical engineering from Lehigh University in 1956.
Mr. Uhlenburg worked for U.S. Steel in Homestead, Pa., from 1957 to 1963; Interlake Steel in Chicago from 1963 to 1968; and Allenwood Steel in Montgomery County until 1970.
In 1972, he bought Donovan Heat Treating, on Tulip Street near Cottman Avenue. Mr. Uhlenburg was president of the firm until 2000, when he became chief executive officer and his son, Jeffrey, became president and co-owner of the firm, founded in 1942.
The firm's Web site states that it offers "heat treating and abrasive sandblasting services to steel warehouses and metal distributors," among others.
Mr. Uhlenburg "acquired a Reading Railroad boxcar and engineered that into a furnace, on tracks . . . the largest heat-treating furnace in the Delaware Valley," his son said.
The Web site says that in October 1988 the firm "suffered a devastating six-alarm fire. . . . Everything was lost." But Mr. Uhlenburg rebuilt the firm, the Web site states, and reopened it in February 1990.
Mr. Uhlenburg was named president in 1989 of the Metal Treating Institute, which numbers 250 member companies, his son said. In the 1990s he was given the institute's Living Legend Award.
Besides his son, Mr. Uhlenburg is survived by his wife of 52 years, Marjory; a daughter, Cindy Lou Maloney; two brothers; a sister; and three grandchildren.
An memorial was set for 11 a.m. tomorrow at Paoli Presbyterian Church, 225 S. Valley Rd.