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Miscellaneous Portage County, Ohio Obituaries

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Willard "Marty" Bishop
Willard "Marty" Bishop, 52, of Akron, died Friday, Dec. 10, 1999. Born in Garrettsville, he was an area resident for most of his life. Mr. Bishop was a production supervisor at Range Resources. He also served in the Ohio National Guard, Ravenna post. He enjoyed NASCAR racing and the Bob Vila program. Survivors include his wife, Darcy; sons, Eric J. of Akron and Samuel, at home; daughters, Megan E. of Aurora and Emily, at home; three grandchildren; mother and stepfather, Virginia and Richard Simpson of Freedom; and brothers, Virgil of California and Gregory of Massillon. Calling hours will be held from 4 p.m. until services at 7 tonight at Hennessy-Bagnoli Funeral Home, 339 Southwest Ave., Tallmadge. The Rev. Matthew Darrin will officiate. Burial will take place at 11 a.m. Tuesday at Hiram Cemetery. Memorials may be made to the Hospice Care Center, 3358 Ridgewood Road, Akron 44333.

Harvey Hedstrum
AURORA - Harvey Hedstrum, 72, died today, Dec. 13, 1999. Services will be announced by Green Funeral Services in Mantua.

Anna M. Schneider
GARRETTSVILLE - Anna M. Schneider, 89, died Sunday, Dec. 12, 1999, at Brea Community Hospital in Brea, Calif. Services will be announced by Green Funeral Services in Mantua.

Rev. Robert E. Brengartner
The Rev. Robert E. Brengartner, pastor emeritus of St. Patrick Church in Kent and a Navy chaplain, who comforted fighting men in three wars, and helped heal a divided congregation, has died. Brengartner, who became pastor of St. Patrick Church in Kent after retiring from the Navy, died Tuesday, Dec. 21, 1999, at Massillon Community Hospital after a brief illness. He was 83. "The grace of God helps you every day," Brengartner said of his early days in Kent. Brengartner's biggest brush with history came in 1963, while serving as the Catholic chaplain at Bethesda Naval Hospital near Washington, D.C. He met the ambulance that carried President John F. Kennedy's body from Dallas, and met Jacqueline Kennedy, still wearing her blood-spattered dress, and Robert and Ethel Kennedy, the president's brother and sister-in-law. He also lent his rosary to Ethel Kennedy as she prayed in the hospital during the president's autopsy. "It was a sad occasion. (Jacqueline) seemed brave, a courageous woman. She was strong," the Rev. Brengartner recalled in a 1978 interview. Born Sept. 1, 1916, in Cleveland, he was the only son of Ira and Louise (Stoll) Brengartner. Brengartner was ordained a priest in February, 1942. After serving a short time at Holy Rosary Parish in Lowellville, a steel town on the Ohio-Pennsylvania border, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy volunteering for a naval chaplaincy. He arrived at Pearl Harbor in early 1945, staying until the end of the war. He returned to Ohio in 1947 where he served parishes in Girard and Youngstown. But as the Korean War began, Brengartner returned to the Navy where he remained for the next 20 years, counseling fighting men during the Vietnam War. Stationed in San Diego. Calif., he helped counsel several crew members of the U.S.S. Pueblo following their release from captivity in North Korea. He served in Cuba and Alaska before retiring with the rank of captain. He became pastor of St. Patrick Church in Kent after retiring from the Navy in 1971. He arrived at a time of great upheaval for the congregation and the community. The May 4 shootings at Kent State University had just occurred the year before, and the congregation had a serious division over liberal activism. He celebrated his 50th anniversary jubilee at St. Patrick Church in Kent in May 1990, at which Bishop James Malone of Youngstown preached. He was named a pastor emeritus of the church, and a scholarship was established in his name. Brengartner remained at St. Patrick until he retired in 1982, and continued to live at St. Mary Catholic Church in Massillon. Calling hours will be held from 3 to 6 p.m. Sunday at St. Mary Church, at 206 Cherry Road, Massillon. A prayer service is set for 6 p.m. Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Monday at St. Mary Church.

Thomas Harvard Hunt
ROOTSTOWN - Thomas Harvard Hunt, 61, of Industry Road, died Sunday, Dec. 19, 1999, at Barberton Citizens Hospital. Born Jan. 23, 1938 in Akron, he was the son of Robert L. and Leona Irene (Fivecoats) Hunt. Mr. Hunt worked for a veterinarian in Bath, and was a former radio dispatcher for the Aurora police department. He served in the U.S. Marine Corps and U.S. Air Force. Survivors include his wife, Joanie (Long), to whom he was married 34 years; and sister, Connie Peterman of Orlando, Fla. His brother, Dennis, died previously. Cremation has taken place. Memorials may be made to his widow in care of Bissler & Sons Funeral Home, 628 W. Main St., Kent, 44240.

Harry A. Chrell
Harry A. Chrell, 85, of Ravenna, died Wednesday Dec. 22, 1999. Services will be announced by Wood-Kortright Funeral Home, Ravenna Chapel.

Paul D. Smith
Paul D. Smith, 90, of Lacrosse Street, Alliance, the stepfather of two Ravenna residents, died Thursday, Dec. 23, 1999, at home after a short illness. Mr. Smith retired in 1973 as a design engineer from Transue-Williams. He was a member of Vine Street United Methodist Church, a life member of the Elks Club No. 467, Conrad Lodge No. 271, 3rd Degree Mason, United Commercial Travelers and the Wilderness Center. Survivors include his wife, Rosemary (Ford) Bayley Smith; son, Byron E. of Alliance; stepson, David Bayley of Ravenna; stepdaughter, Linda Moore of Ravenna; three grandchildren; one great-grandchild; five step-grandchildren; and two great-step-grandchildren. His first wife, Valetta Smith; brothers, Lawrence, Donald and Herbert Smith; sister, Sevilla Wright; and one great-grandson, all died previously. Calling hours will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. Monday at the Walton-Schrader Funeral Home, 1131 W. State St., Alliance, where services will be held at 11 a.m. Tuesday, with the Rev. William Wright officiating. Burial will be in Fairmount Memorial Park. Memorials may be made to Visiting Nurse Association Hospice or the Stark County Humane Society.

Gladys G. Malchus
MANTUA - Gladys G. Malchus, 93, died Thursday, Dec. 23, 1999, at Maple Wood Care Centre in Streetsboro after a period of failing health. Born Dec. 7, 1906 in Cleveland, she was the daughter of Frank and Elizabeth (Brady) Wokatey. Formerly of Cleveland, she had lived in Mantua since 1964. Mrs. Malchus was employed for many years as a wrapper at several of the department stores in downtown Cleveland. She was a member of St. Timothy's Catholic Church in Cleveland. She enjoyed bingo, crocheting and watching "Jeopardy." Survivors include her daughter, Lenore Kovar of Mantua; 11 grandchildren; 15 great-grandchildren; and one great-great-grandchild. Her husband, Godfry, whom she married June 16, 1925, died in 1954. Her daughters, Betty Kocar and Kathryn; one granddaughter; one brother; and two sisters, died previously. Calling hours will be held from 12:30 p.m. until services at 2:30 p.m. Tuesday at Green's Funeral Home in Mantua. The Rev. James Lang will officiate. Burial will be in Hillside Cemetery in Mantua.

Roman D. Smeiles
Roman D. Smeiles, 81, of 1023 Norwood St., Kent, died Saturday, Dec. 25, 1999, at Robinson Memorial Hospital in Ravenna. Born Feb. 5, 1918 in Kent, he was the son of Domonick and Lydia (Ogenski) Smeiles. Mr. Smeiles retired after 44 years at Ferry Machine in Kent, where he was a machinist and superintendent. He was a member of St. Patrick Church Church in Kent, where he served as an usher. He was a former member of the Knights of Columbus. Survivors include his wife, Helen (Haley); son, Brian (Evelyn) of Lake Mary, Fla.; daughters, Celestia (Clarence) Wright of University Heights, Stephanie Smeiles-Xenias of Kent and Lauren Wygle of Leavittsburg; 10 grandchildren; brother, Ted (Florence) of Brimfield; and sisters, Anna Znosko of Alliance and Tilly (Bill) Montoni of Kent. His brother, Benny, died in 1997. Calling hours will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. Monday at Bissler & Sons Funeral Home in Kent. Services will be held at 10 a.m. Tuesday at St. Patrick Church in Kent. Burial will be in Standing Rock Cemetery in Kent. Memorials may be made to St. Patrick School Endowment Fund, 127 Portage St., Kent, 44240.

Laura Patrick, 93
Laura Patrick, 93, of Ravenna, died Saturday, Dec. 25, 1999, at her daughter's home after a short illness. Born April 1, 1906 in Ravenna, she was the daughter of Genaro and Maria (Rufi) Senerchia. She was a Ravenna resident most of her life. Mrs. Patrick and her husband, Thomas, owned and operated the East Park Restaurant many years ago. She was a member of Immaculate Conception Church and a past president of the Kent Emblem Club. Survivors include her daughter, Helen (Jack) Tortorella of Ravenna; three grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren. Her husband, Thomas, died in 1974. Her brothers, Louis, Arthur and Austin "Babe" Senerchia, James, Samuel "Jumbo" and Charles "Cherry" Rufi; and sisters, Ernestine DiLoreto, Elvira "Ollie" Mascio, Susie Trochio, Lyda D'Amico Paci and Edith Arganti, also died previously. Calling hours will be held from 2 to 4 and 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesday at the Wood-Kortright Funeral Home, Ravenna Chapel. Services will be held at 10 a.m. Wednesday at Immaculate Conception Church in Ravenna, with the Rev. Robert Sabatino officiating. Burial will be in St. Mary's Cemetery, Ravenna. Memorials may be made to the Hospice of Robinson Memorial Hospital or Immaculate Conception Church.

Grayce Shufelt, 80
Former Brimfield resident Grayce J. Shufelt, nee Raber, 80, of Cuyahoga Falls, died Thursday, Dec. 23, 1999. Born in Kent and formerly of Brimfield, she had moved to Cuyahoga Falls in 1971. Mrs. Shufelt was a member of the Church of Christ in Kent. Survivors include her husband, Charles E. Shufelt; son, William C. (Linda) of Tennessee; daughter, Patricia L. Swain of Cuyahoga Falls; eight grandchildren; seven great-grandchildren; brother, Don Raber of Nevada; and sister, Carolyn Weiss of Kent. Her daughter, Sandra J. Doerfler, died previously. There will be no calling hours. Memorial services will be held at 10 a.m. Wednesday at the Clifford-Shoemaker Funeral Home, 1930 Front St., Cuyahoga Falls, with the Rev. Mark Brazle officiating. Burial will be in Restland Cemetery in Brimfield. Memorials may be made to the Bureau of the Blind, 401 Market Ave. N., Suite 2200, Canton, Ohio, 44702.

Lottie Geer, 81
Lottie P. Geer, 81, of Ravenna, died Thursday, Dec. 23, 1999, at Robinson Memorial Hospital in Ravenna after a short illness. Born July 20, 1918, in Kent, she was the daughter of William and Pauline (Yost) Wiley. She had been a lifelong area resident. Mrs. Geer was a homemaker and a member of First United Methodist Church of Ravenna. Survivors include her daughters, Patricia Ferguson of Ravenna, and Carol (Robert) Davidson of Kent; five grandchildren; three great-grandchildren; and sister, Clara Wilson of Kent. Her husband, William, died in 1985. Private services have been held at Grandview Memorial Park in Ravenna. The Wood-Kortright Funeral Home, Ravenna Chapel, handled arrangements.

John Wickersham, 71
John H. Wickersham Sr., 71, of Ravenna, died Saturday, Dec. 25, 1999, at home. Born March 18, 1928, in Gunter, Texas, he was the son of Fred C. and Martha O. (Stagner) Wickersham. He had lived in Ravenna since 1957. Mr. Wickersham retired in 1990 from Amatek Lamb Electric of Kent, where he had been a machinist. He was a Korean War veteran of the U.S. Navy and a member of the American Legion Post of Ravenna. Survivors include his sons, John (Holly) and James, both of Kent; daughters, Melody (Bill) Clark of Ravenna and Kim Westfall of Jonesborough, Tenn.; stepson, Mark (Debbie) Partin of New Bern, N.C.; 10 grandchildren; and former wives, Margaret Wickersham and Carol Westfall. His brothers, Bud, Harold and Glenn; and sister, Martha Graeser, all died previously. Private services will be held for the immediate family. Burial will be in Maple Grove Cemetery in Ravenna. Arrangements are being handled by the Wood-Kortright Funeral Home, Ravenna Chapel. Memorials may be made to the Robinson Memorial Hospital Visiting Nurse and Hospice.

Mary Chill, 93
Mary E. Chill, 93, of Ravenna, died Saturday, Dec. 25, 1999, at Robinson Memorial Hospital. Arrangements will be announced by Shorts Funeral Home, Ravenna Chapel.

'Pokie' Heisler, 73
Sophie Rhodes "Pokie" Heisler, 73, active in the Ravenna and Kent area for more than 50 years, died following a sudden illness Tuesday in Atlanta, Ga,. while visiting her children for the Christmas holidays. Mrs. Heisler came to Ravenna in 1946 when she married Robert Heisler, whose family had been in community for several generations running the A.C. Williams Co., one of the Portage County's largest employers, for much of the 20th century. A homemaker whose major interest was her family, she and her husband had eight children, seven of whom survive, and as a parent she became active over the years in the Ravenna school system. She was also active in the Robinson Memorial Hospital's Women's Auxiliary and in Twin Lakes Country Club where she was a member for more than 50 years. At Twin Lakes, she participated in the Ladies Golf Association and had served as its president. Golf was a popular pastime for her husband and children and so it became for Mrs. Heisler, who is remembered for having scored four "holes in one" after she passed her 50th birthday. After her husband died six years ago, Mrs. Heisler moved to Twin Lakes to enjoy the closeness of friends, many of whom she had made playing golf, and to more easily enjoy her favorite pastime. Born July 29, 1926 in Charlestown, W.Va., and raised in Middlesboro, Ky., she graduated from Gulf Park High School in Gulf Shores, Miss. and then attended the University of Kentucky before meeting her husband. She was a member of the Chi Omega sorority. Survivors include her son, Yank (Lynn), of Shaker Heights; daughters Susan Young of Edwardsville, Ill., Nancie Torrence and Carol (Bob) Seymour, both of Atlanta, Ga., Anita (Jerry) Claringbole of Cincinnati; Marsha (Bret) Level of Columbus and Dede (Jeff) Bell, Napa, Calif.; 15 grandchildren; two step-grandchildren; brother John Rhodes of Louisville, Ky.; sister, Jacqueline Smith of Versailles, Ky.; brothers in-law, James B. (Jo) Heisler of Kent and Bud (Betty) McCormick of California; and sister in-law Beverly Heisler (Steve) Semegen of Tucson, Ariz. A daughter, Mary Margaret, died in 1954. Visitors will be received from noon until 1 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 4, when services will be held at the Wood-Kortright Funeral Home, Ravenna Chapel. A reception will immediately follow the service. Burial will be in Maple Grove Cemetery in Ravenna. Memorias can be made to the American Heart Association, 1236 Weathervane, Suite 300 C, Akron, Oh 44313.

'Sissy' France, 83
Ethelnore "Sissy" (Secord) France, 83, of Jacksonville, Fla., the widow of Judge James France, died Thursday, Dec. 23, 1999. Born in Wauwatosa, Wis., she had lived for many years in Kent until moving to Jacksonville in 1978. While living in Kent, Mrs. France was active in Coterie III and Elm Branch Garden Club. She was a member of the United Church of Christ in Kent and the Twin Lakes coffee group. She also was a bridge player. During World War II, she was selected by President Franklin D. Roosevelt to be the senior Red Cross field director for the 8th Air Force, 457th Bomb Group, which was stationed in England. She married her husband, James, who was on active duty with the U.S. Army Air Force, in Conington, England on March 19, 1945. Judge France served on the Portage County municipal and common pleas benches from 1953 to 1961 and also served as an appellate court judge. He died in 1979. Survivors include her son, Peter of Jacksonville, Fla. ; daughter, Martha Lally of Jacksonville, Fla.; two grandchildren; and sister, Laura Ballsrud of Wayzata, Minn. A mmmorial service will be held at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 23 at Arlington Congregational Church, 431 University Blvd. N., Jacksonville, Fla. Memorials may be made to the Biblical Garden Fund or the Choir Fund of the Arlington Congregational Church.

Inez Marggraf, 95
Inez D. Hassler Marggraf, 95, of West Main Street (Royal Arms), Kent, died Tuesday, Dec. 28, 1999, at Longmeadow Care Center in Ravenna. Born Feb. 25, 1904 in Berwick, she was the daughter of Randolph Jefferson and Anna Malinda (Runyon) Detray. Mrs. Marggraf was a member of the United Methodist Church of Kent; charter member of the Rachael Circle; Elm Branch, Garden Club; Fidelis; member and past matron of Olive Chapter No. 53, Order of the Eastern Star, to which she had belonged since 1932; former member of the Women's Club; "Grey Ladies;" the Red Cross affiliated volunteers in Toledo for 14 years and the Vagabond Theater Group. Survivors include her daughter, Patricia J. (James) Jaquays of Hiram; four grandchildren; six great-grandchildren. Her husband, Ralph, died in 1973. Her first husband, Willard Hassler, died in 1953. Five brothers and two sisters died previously. Visitation will be at noon Monday at Bissler & Sons Funeral Home in Kent with services following at 1 p.m. with the Rev. David Palmer officiating. Eastern Star services will be held at the funeral home at 11:45 a.m. Monday. Burial will be in Standing Rock Cemetery in Kent at a later date. Memorial donations may be made to the Order of the Eastern Star Home.

Helen Allen, 79
Helen Ann "Mac" Allen, 79, died Tuesday evening at St. Elizabeth Health Center in Youngstown where she was being treated for injuries sustained in a fall at her home Christmas Day. A resident in Youngstown since 1948, she had several ties to the area, first and foremost as the wife of her late husband, Griff Allen, to whom she was married in 1946. Mr. Allen had grown up in Ravenna, but he and Mrs. Allen had moved to Youngstown because of his work. She had obtained a bachelor's degree in education from Kent State University, but Mrs. Allen, like many American women immediately following World War II, elected to become a full-time homemaker. She and her husband raised eight children, all of whom survive, and of all their pleasures in life, none surpassed that of spending time with their children and eventually their grandchildren and great grandchildren. Born Dec. 23, 1920 in Winchester, Mass., Mrs. Allen, the daughter of Joseph and Helen Ray McCarthy, had only last week celebrated her 79th birthday. She spent her formative years growing up in Lakewood where her parents had moved because of her father's career. Determined to get an education beyond high school, she enrolled at Kent State University in the early 1940s and as a student was a member of Sigma Sigma Sigma Sorority. It was during those years, she met her future husband, Griff Allen of Ravenna, then a student attending Notre Dame University. A people person with a hearty and infectious laugh, Mrs. Allen, with her husband, enjoyed making friends with many in the Ravenna and Kent communities. World War II intervened resulting in Mr. Allen's being drafted into the Army Air Force in which he flew fighter pilot missions in the European theater of the war. When Mrs. Allen's brother, John Edward, was killed in the war, she enlisted in the U.S. Marines, eventually becoming a sergeant serving in San Francisco as a parachute rigger. Recalling those years, she would remember that everyone who packed a parachute had to sew her name on the parachute to better identify who packed the ones that failed to open. As a Marine sergeant, she developed a command voice, that her children, as adults, enjoyed remembering as the voice that kept all eight of them in check in the bustling Allen household. Following the war, Mrs. Allen taught for a short time in Battle Creek, Mich. at The Percy Jones Veteran Hospital where she worked at helping veterans earn a high school diploma. On Jan. 4, 1947, she and husband were married, and following his graduation from Notre Dame, the couple settled in Youngstown, where they became charter members of St. Christine Church. Mrs. Allen for a time was a member of the Catholic Collegiate Association. Mrs. Allen is survived by three sons, Griff (Rosemary) of Twinsburg; John Edward, with whom she continued to make her home, in Youngstown; Jerry J. (Caroline) of Boardman; Mrs. Jo Ellen (David) Elliott of Paris, OH; Mrs. Janet (David) Dix, Ravenna; Mrs. Judy (Ron) Moschella, Boardman; Mrs. Jill (Rob) Mullaly, Richmond, Ind.; Miss Jean Allen at home; a brother, Joseph McCarthy of Atlantic Beach, Fl., a sister, Miss Mary McCarthy, also of Atlantic Beach; 13 grandchildren and three greatchildren. Her husband died in 1989. Funeral services will be 9 a.m. Friday at the Fox Funeral Home in Youngstown and at 9:30 a.m. at St. Christine Church. Friends may call today (Thursday) from 4 to 8 p.m. at the Fox Funeral Home in Youngstown.

Julia Ann Giffin, 73
Julia Ann "Judy" Giffin, 73, of Pinehurst, N.C., died Wednesday, Dec. 29, 1999, at First Health Moore Regional Hospital in Pinehurst. A native of Garrettsville, she was the daughter of Kenneth McKay and Lillie Irene (Detray) Gentholtz. Mrs. Giffin was a 1944 graduate of Garrettsville High School and was employed by the Erie Railroad. She was a member of Community Presbyterian Church and Pinehurst Country Club. Survivors include her husband, Clarence M., to whom she had been married to for 50 years; sons, David Charles (Soledad) of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Douglas Kenneth (Kim) of St. Augustine, Fla. and James Robert (Sandra) of Cleveland; and 10 grandchildren. Memorial donations may be made to the Community Presbyterian Church of Pinehurst or the United Parkinson Foundation, 833 W. Washington Blvd., Chicago, 60607.


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