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West Virginia Jeweler David Ettinger Dies Unexpectedly at 69

Inwood, W.Va. – David Evers Ettinger, beloved owner of Bechdel Jewelers in Inwood, West Virginia, passed away unexpectedly on March 13th at the age of 69. He was attending the Independent Jewelers Organization (IJO) show in Dallas with his wife, Lori, at the time of his passing.

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While the family describes his death as peaceful, the circumstances surrounding it are under investigation. Another jeweler present at the IJO show has been arrested and charged in connection with the incident. The case is ongoing and will be referred to a Dallas County grand jury, according to a police spokesperson.

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Ettinger, a master jeweler, had been a fixture at Bechdel Jewelers since its opening in 1975 by his father-in-law, Charles Bechdel. He and Lori became co-owners upon Charles’ retirement and remained active in the business until announcing their own retirement and the store’s closure last fall.

Remembered as a charismatic individual who formed instant connections with everyone he met, Ettinger was also deeply involved in his community. He was a member of several organizations, including IJO, the Retail Jewelers Organization, and the Virginias Golf Association.

“Dave was a loyal and devoted member of IJO for nearly 17 years,” said IJO President Stephen Barnes. “His smile and warm personality made everyone around him feel special. Dave’s legacy will live on through the many lives he touched throughout his illustrious career in the jewelry industry.

Outside of his professional life, Ettinger was an avid golfer and skier who enjoyed traveling, savoring good beer, and spending time with loved ones. He also cherished his beach house, where he delighted in spotting dolphins, collecting seashells, and helping baby sea turtles begin their journey.

His family describes him as “a font of passion” who had genuine enthusiasm not only for his own interests but also for those of his friends.

Ettinger is survived by his wife, Lori; his daughter, Megan Lilly, and her fiancé, Bryan Paduano; his brother, Richard B. Ettinger; his sister, Deborah D. Carrier; and other family members. He was preceded in death by his parents and his father-in-law.

A visitation and funeral service were held at Brown Funeral Home South Berkeley Chapel in Inwood on March 24th and 25th, respectively. In lieu of flowers, the family requests contributions to the American Heart Association or the Berkeley County Historical Society.

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